inflation rate

Discussion in 'Economics' started by kotika, Apr 26, 2006.

  1. kotika


    ok, for those of you over 30, lets take a quick survey of prices in your state/city
    over the last ten years.
    Please give me a 1996 and 2006 prices of
    these things:
    1) rent for a basic 2 br apartment, per month
    2) gas, per gallon
    3) liability insurance for a car, per year
    4) food, at the supermarket and the restaurant
    5) electricity, per KW
    6) computer, typical of then and now
    7) typical coast to coast airfare
    8) long distance telephone rates
    9) health insurance

    i moved around, and dont live in US anymore, but my feeling is that except 2 and 9, most have not increased by much
    and some 6,7 and 8 had fallen.

    1) +30-40%
    2) +120-150%
    3) +20% ?? not sure
    4) +10-20%
    5) +30-40%
    6) -50%
    (used to cost around 2K, now 1K)
    7) 0%
    (i remember 300-400 then as is now)
    8) -90%
    9) dunno

    official CPI says cumulative inflation between 1996 and 2006 was 27%,
    to me it seems entirely consistent with what i see above. Note that the yearly rates should be calculated as a logarithm, so 27% in 10 years works out to about 2.3% per year.

    Please let us know your numbers, but please dont add new items, unless they are part of regular expenditure of average person. so dont bring up college tuition, it is the market price of an investment, not of a consumer expenditure. otherwise next thing you know they will call the 100%+ increase in the price of stocks "inflation"
  2. TGregg


    Computers definately have fallen. Ten years ago, the state of the art PC with all the bells and whistles was always around 4 grand, and that didn't include a printer.
  3. Gas will rise and fall, telephone calls have dropped due to new technology, insurance can actually fall with more competition in the market place, but ya know I've never seen tuition fall even with the many schools out there. Anyone know of any major university that has ever seen its tuition decline?
  4. kotika


    lets not bring up tuition and houses: i insist they are investments.

    ...but since you asked....

    Princeton tuition went from about 23K to 31K in these years, but has become need-blind. This means that they dont look at how rich you are before making the decision on whether to admit you. Once they decide to admit you, they will cover up to 100% of the cost if you cant.

    I think the same is true of some of the other top schools.

    so the increase is 34%, more or less inline with inflation, but the affordability is simply not an issue anymore at those schools.
  5. Bob111


    car and salary
  6. sorry but #4 food prices on some items are +100% imo....

    most DEFNITELY more than +10% on Food items total...

    I would say at least 50-60% if not more
  7. kotika


    oh, please... i could go to a nice restaurant and the main course would be 17-19$ then, it cant be more than $22-24 now.

    the lunch buffet at the chinese was 3.75 back in 1990, and $7-8 now!

    the claim that "real" inflation is anything more than 3-4% is ridiculous. its that people have a tendency to be nostalgic about how cheap it was then. to older people, something that happened 30 yrs ago may seem just like yesterday, so their perception of inflation is exaggerated.

    for example a new corvette would set you back just a four grand back in 1960, it seems like a lot of inflation from then to now, where the car costs around 43 grand, but we are talking 46 years --- and a period of REALLY high (even by official measures) inflation period in the 70's . This example works out to 5.7% pa, versus average 4.3% official CPI figure so slightly higher than inflation, but nothing dramatic...
  8. Entertainment prices have gone through the roof. A night at Yankee stadium for the average family of four requires a third mortgage on the house (that's assuming you didn't scalp the tickets and end up sitting in the upper deck. If you scalp good seats you might have to sell a kidney).

    Also, there are little things that have more than doubled in the last ten years. For instance, a can of soda from a vending machine was $.50 cents, now most machines are $1.00 to $1.50...the $1.50 machines usually have the 16 oz plastic bottles though. (I realize that extra dollar isn't going to bankrupt anyone, but it was one of the first things that I thought of). :)

    One huge increase has been the price of beer/wine/alcohol at bars and restaurants. A glass of Santa margarita (pinot) at a nearby restaurant is $18 dollars. That seems rather exorbitant considering you can buy a bottle at a liquor store for $23.
    Even domestic beer has gone up sharply. $5 for a bottle of Coors or Bud is just wrong...and that's not counting Manhattan where it is usually $6-$8 for a domestic bottle. The other day we were out for happy hour and one of the bars had a "happy hour special"...domestic bottles for $3.50! Wow..thanks for that great "special". :D
  9. (1) You should be able to buy a BOTTLE of Santa Margherita PG for ~$18 at a warehouse club. (2) Another expenditure that should be included is item (10), taxes. If the CPI included that, it would be much higher.