Consumer Prices Rise in July as Demand Increases

August 12, 2020

U.S. consumers were paying more for goods and services in July as demand snaps back to life after the pandemic lockdown. The consumer price index, which tracks the prices of everyday items like food, clothing, and gasoline, increased by a seasonally adjusted 0.6% last month. This marks the second consecutive monthly increase following June’s 0.6% increase, which was seen as a turning point after decreases in March, April and May.

The increase was led by a sharp increase in gasoline prices, which jumped 5.6% for the month. Economists point to the increase, along with the 2.3% jump in used car prices, as an indication that consumers are still wary of public transportation.

It remains to be seen if the increase is just a product of the rebound in demand on consumers’ part, or the first signs of building inflationary pressure that some economists predict will come as a result of stimulus spending.

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