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Report Shows Americans Spent More on Gas, Cars, Healthcare in October

New reporting by MarketWatch shows that “Americans paid higher prices for gasoline, used cars, medical treatment and recreation in October, but inflation more broadly remained low and fairly stable.”

Gas prices increased in October to 3.7%, but Americans are paying less at the pump than they did a year ago. The cost of gas is estimated to be around 7% lower.

Prices for medical care also rose in October by 1%, making it the biggest increase in this area in more than three years.

The cost of healthcare is on the rise after a prolonged period of stable prices for reasons unspecified in this reporting. Some analysts, however, worry it could feed into higher inflation. Others do expect medical prices to taper off again at some point in the future.

“Food at home” (groceries) prices rose in October and just 1% overall in the past year, but the cost of dining out is rising much faster than eating in. “Food away from home” prices have risen 3.3%, The likely cause is the higher cost of labor as many states have increased minimum wages.

Prices did drop “for clothes, household furnishings, new cars and trucks and airline fares.”

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About the Author: Aisha K. Staggers is a writer, lecturer, political analyst and literary agent. She appears weekly for “Staggers’ State of Things” on the Dr. Vibe Show. Her work has been published by Paper Magazine, AfroPunk, The Spool, GREY Journal, MTV News, HuffPost, Blavity, Atlanta Blackstar, For Harriet, New York Review of Books and a host of other first-run publications and syndicated outlets. Find her on Twitter @AishaStaggers. For more of her work, check out her page here!

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