Millennials are so frivolous 🙄
The Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) dropped their highly anticipated July CPI numbers today. It was kinda meh. CPI stands for Consumer Price Index. The BLS monitors the prices on a collection of stuff most of us use on the regular to determine what direction the price of living is headed. Groceries, restaurants, electricity, gas, and shelter are all counted. This is the report that actually defines if things are getting more expensive or not (spoiler alert: yeah, they are).
Although the numbers show that we are paying about 8.7% more for the same stuff than we were last year, the price of the whole CPI basket didn’t changed much from the June report. Mostly thanks to gas prices coming back down from the goddamn stratosphere. Seriously, gas prices really saved the day in this report. Gasoline’s 7.7% price drop in the July CPI cancelled out a 1.1% increase in food costs and a half-percent rise in housing.
That change in shelter cost has a big impact on the whole equation. Because having a roof over your head is vital and housing costs don’t usually swing around wildly, shelter counts for one-third of CPI. This month’s report told us America is paying 5.7% more for its housing than it was last year. At the same time that our inflation-adjusted hourly earnings are down 3%. So you could say that keeping a roof over your head is 8.7% more expensive than it was last year. Fantastic.
…so maybe it’s not brunch that’s keeping millennials back. Maybe, just maybe, it’s something bigger than that.