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Prices: Last year, inflation in the US peaked at a decades-high level.
Throughout 2022, the Federal Reserve has been fighting inflation and has employed all available strategies, including raising interest rates.
Price increases have dropped to 7.1%, according to recent Bureau of Labor Statistics data on inflation.
Between November 1 and December 24, retail prices rose 7.6% (inflation unadjusted), making it impossible for people to buy gifts without exceeding their spending limit.
The Mastercard Spending Pulse gave the data, which examines non-auto retail spending.
As food prices rose faster than inflation throughout 2022, the expense of holiday meals surged.
Some products enjoyed astounding double-digit growth, while others showed no change or even a decline.
Retailers saw a shift in consumer behavior as soon as the demand for electronics decreased.
Over the year, which ended in November, the prices of major electronics declined.
- Smartphones plunged 23.4%
- TV prices dropped 17%
- Computers rolled back prices by 4.4%
- Major appliances fell by 1%
Several retailers, like Walmart and Best Buy, stocked up at the start of 2022 in anticipation of supply chain issues and expected increases in customer demand.
However, their goals were thwarted by increasing prices and dwindling customer confidence.
Additionally, when confined in the early phases of the 2020 pandemic, many made substantial expenditures or upgrades.
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Apparel & toys
Although gradually, clothing prices increased in 2022.
- Clothing prices rose by 3.6%
- Footwear increased by 2.3%
- Sporting goods climbed 2.7%
- Toys had a meager 0.6% increase
Despite the minor price rise, the items were still a great deal because inflation outpaced them.
Doug McMillon, the CEO of Walmart, said in December:
“In toys, sporting goods, categories like that, prices have come down more aggressively.”
“We’re still inflated, but we’re not inflated nearly as much as we are in the other categories.”
However, there was a stockpile of extra goods because retailers overestimated customer demand.
To encourage customers to make purchases, stores provided deals to shift inventory.
As a result, retailers were able to regulate prices.
The 2020 pandemic caused the demand for air travel to fall and reach an all-time low.
But last year, it was restored.
Annually, the expense of travel rose by 36%.
In March, Delta’s president, Glen Hauenstein, called the rise “unprecedented.”
“I have never seen… demand turn on so quickly as it has over Omicron,” said Hauenstein.
A record amount of revenue was made by airlines in April, May, and June as a result of high rates and crowded flights.
Due to travelers, they made a full-force resurgence two years after the pandemic-induced lockdowns.
Travel via land became more expensive.
Gasoline costs rose by 10.1%, but they have dropped from their all-time highs.
The Russian invasion of Ukraine and geopolitical strategies that relied on oil supply contributed to gas price instability.
According to GasBuddy, the national average may reach $4 per gallon prices as early as May.
Another year of severe volatility is not anticipated, according to the fuel price tracking app GasBuddy.
Read also: Tax credit rules for next year not entirely clear
In 2022, food prices rose by 10.6%, higher than general inflation.
Through November 2022, various factors contributed to price rises for specific grocery items.
Because of the devastating avian influenza, a scarcity of supplies, and overwhelming demand, egg prices increased by 49.1%.
The Russian invasion of Ukraine caused margarine prices to rise by 47.4%.
In addition, as the world’s milk supply shrank, butter prices have risen by 27%.
Another victim of the Ukrainian scenario is flour.
Due to the disruption of the world grain market and high US transportation costs, the price of flour surged by 24.9%.
Due to crop diseases, lettuce prices in California increased by 19.8%.
Over that time, there was a 12% increase in food prices.
In 2022, as the expense of eating out rose, many patrons opted to accept higher prices as an alternative.
Dining out became more expensive by 8.5% last year due to establishments raising menu pricing to offset growing material costs.