Overheated economy fueling inflation ahead of the holidays as shoppers see higher cost of goods

Food prices are skyrocketing as the cost for meat, poultry, fish and eggs are up almost 12% since last year.
RIVERSIDE, Calif. (KABC) -- The post-pandemic economic recovery is causing some unwanted side effects.

Inflation is causing sticker shock at the cash register for many consumers, which has some shoppers cutting back on their weekly trip to the grocery store.

"I'm noticing everything from meat to paper goods are extremely high - 30% to 40% higher," said Riverside resident Lois Randolph.

Food prices are skyrocketing as the cost for meat, poultry, fish and eggs are up almost 12% since last year. The price for steaks is up a whopping 24% alone.

"Before, I would come to the store and it was for this amount like $70, now its $160," said Leticia Barbosa of San Bernardino. "So, definitely everything is going up. "I look at those prices and I am like, 'We will stick to chicken and fish.'"

Across the board, the prices for goods are up in every sector of the economy, including gas prices. The U.S. Department of Labor released new data this week showing consumer prices have surged 6.2% over the last year - the highest level of inflation that hasn't been seen since 1991.

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Prices of food, gas, cars and more are skyrocketing as the consumer price index soared 6.2% from a year ago.

"An inappropriate amount of stimulus is creating excessive amounts of money demand, and the price level is what goes up," said Christopher Thornberg, the director of the UC Riverside School of Business Center for Economic Forecasting and Development.

With the holidays approaching, shoppers like Barbosa are expecting to spend more money on her next trip to the grocery store.

"We haven't done our Thanksgiving shopping, but I could already imagine the prices," she said.

There is no sign that inflation will slow anytime soon. Some businesses are raising prices to offset higher pay. Shortages of semiconductors and port backlogs are projected to last well into 2022, intensifying inflation pressures.

Retailers are expecting a strong winter holiday shopping season, which is now sure to be costlier than had been expected just a few months ago.

The Associated Press contributed to this report.
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