WEST PALM BEACH, Fla. — Inflation is proving to be stubborn in South Florida. The latest Consumer Price Index shows a 7.8% jump in August compared to a year ago.
Nationally, inflation was up 3.7% for the same 12-month period, and other cities like New York, Philadelphia and Los Angeles posted increases below 4%.
"Florida's uniqueness in terms of inflation and persistence is the scarcity of housing," Sean Snaith of the University of Central Florida's Institute of Economic Forecasting said.
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Housing in South Florida, which includes Palm Beach County, jumped 12.5% in August 2023 from August 2022, but other sectors also showed increases.
Food prices rose 5.6% and electricity costs ran 12.2% higher.
"All these big unavoidable expenditures that consumers and households have to make continue to erode paychecks," Snaith said.
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However, economists said the month-to-month increases do seem to be slowing.
"I do think there is a light at the end of the tunnel," Jill Gonzalez at WalletHub said. "Especially when it comes to food, more so when it comes to gas, but when it comes to those goods and services like electricity that's where we might not see the slowdown."