cost of living

There Will Be a 1.5% Increase in Social Security Benefits Next Year

The Social Security administration announced there will be a 1.5% increase in social security benefits next year.  The cost of living adjustment is fairly low, but if chained CPI had passed Congress and was used, the situation for social security increases would be much worse.

Don't Count on a 1.5% Social Security Increase, the Figures Have not Been Released Yet

The press is announcing a low social security cost of living adjustment for 2014, a 1.5% increase.  The problem with this headline announcement by the press is the social security cost of living increase has not been announced yet and is highly dependent on government inflation statistics for September.  These September statistics have not been released and due to the shutdown, probably will not be this week.

Consumer Price Index Increases 0.6% for August 2012

The August Consumer Price Index, which measures inflation, increased 0.6% from July. This is the largest monthly increase since June 2009 and the reason for the jump is 80% gasoline prices. The CPI gasoline index increased a whopping 9.0% in a month. When removing food and energy inflation, of which gasoline is a part, core inflation increased 0.1% for August. Below is CPI's monthly percentage change.



CPI is up 1.7% from a year ago, shown in the below graph.


CPI Shows No Change for July 2012, Up 1.4% From A Year Ago

The July Consumer Price Index, which measures inflation, was unchanged from June, the 2nd month in a row. The reason was electricity costs which dropped -1.3%. Gasoline increased 0.3% for July. Removing food and energy, inflation increased 0.1% for the month. Below is CPI's monthly percentage change.