In April, consumer prices for all items increased a seasonally-adjusted 0.4% from March and were 4.9% higher than they were a year earlier, the Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) reported Wednesday.
While the all-items Consumer Price Index (CPI) increase of 4.9% for the 12 months ending in April was the smallest year-over-year rise since the period ending April 2021, inflation thus far during the Biden Administration is still more than three times higher than it was under his predecessor, Donald Trump.
During Trump’s 48 months in the White House, monthly consumer price increases averaged 1.9%, year-over-year. During the 28 months that Joe Biden has been in office, prices have averaged 6.4% higher than they were 12 months earlier.
Increases in the cost of gasoline (up 3.0%), motor vehicle insurance (up 1.4%) and buying a used vehicle (up 4.4%) fueled April’s 0.4% CPI increase, compared to March, while new vehicle prices dipped 0.2%.
Over the past 12 months, however, used vehicle prices are down 6.6%, while the average cost of a new vehicle is up 5.4%. Motor vehicle insurance cost 15.5% more in April than it did a year ago.
The price of energy services fell 1.7% for the month, but was 5.9% higher than April year-ago. The utility (piped) gas services index for April was down 4.9% from March and 2.1% lower than it was in April of 2022. Likewise, the fuel oil index fell 4.5% over the month and 20.2% compared to year-ago.
Meanwhile, real average hourly earnings for all employees decreased 0.5%, seasonally adjusted, from April 2022 to April 2023, BLS reported Wednesday in a separate release. Compared to March, seasonally-adjusted real wages rose 0.1% in April.
The 12-month change in real average hourly earnings, combined with a decrease of 0.6% in the average workweek, resulted in a 1.1% decrease in real average weekly earnings over this period.