‘It’s just crazy’: Inflation hammers New Yorkers as consumer prices hit 40-year high

Skyrocketing prices are forcing New Yorkers to cut back on spending — and even go into debt — amid an inflation rate that hit a 40-year high on Friday.

The latest monthly figures from the US Bureau of Labor Statistics show the average price of all consumer goods jumped 8.6% in the 12 months to May.

It’s the biggest increase since 1981 – before most Americans were born – and it leaves many ordinary people reeling from the sticker shock as they shop, buy gas or buy a new home. .

‘It’s just crazy

Upper West Side resident Natasha Samus walked out of her weekly trip to the neighborhood’s iconic Zabar deli on Friday after spending at least 10% more than a year ago.

“Three hundred dollars for two bags of food – and I didn’t even buy any meat,” the Manhattan woman fumed.

“I only have dairy products, vegetables, cold cuts, jam, bread and fish.”

Samus, 55, said the same thing “cost $100, $150.

“It’s just crazy,” she said.

“I don’t buy as much food anymore because it’s too expensive.”

Samus also said she would walk her home, as a cab ride from the store on Broadway and West 80th Street would be too expensive.

Natasha Samus says she doesn’t buy as much food as she used to because of the high prices.
Robert Miller

Meanwhile, Samus said she had hoped to swap her flat for one with more natural light – until she learned of current rent prices.

“My one-bedroom apartment costs $3,000 a month. Another room in the same building now costs $4,800,” she said.

“It is not possible for me to move. Rent prices are just too high.

“I never go out”

Patrick Legros
Patrick Legros said food and gas prices made him spend more than he earned.
Robert Miller

Security alarm installer Patrick Legros, 62, said even with a steady job he had fallen behind on mortgage payments for his three-bedroom home in suburban Pomona, New State York.

“I spend more than I earn. Food and gas are the worst – that’s where my paycheck goes,” he said while working on West 79th Street in Manhattan.

“It just cost me $103 to fill up the tank, and my tank wasn’t even empty. Gas is $5 a gallon where I live.

Legros said he started eating more fast food, admitting it was “not healthy, but that’s all I can afford.

“And I never go out for a meal or a drink with friends, so my social life has suffered,” he added.

“It sucks to spend so much

Lauren Capone
Lauren Capone said she spent $120 on breakfast with her husband and baby.
Robert Miller

Lauren Capone did a double take on Thursday when the bill arrived for breakfast with her husband and their one-year-old daughter Luella at Sarabeth’s restaurant on Amsterdam Avenue in Manhattan.

“We had orange juice and tea, a kids meal, I had egg whites and my husband had French toast. And it was $120,” she recalls.

“It sucks to spend so much on breakfast.”

The expensive meal “made me think about where we eat, what kind of food we get and how much we order,” Capone, 31, said as he pushed his toddler on the swings of Riverside Park’s playground.

Meanwhile, the monthly rent for the family’s Upper West Side apartment just went up $400, and “errands are definitely getting more expensive,” Capone said.

“I shop at Whole Foods to get good food for my daughter, but it’s getting more and more expensive,” she said.

“I definitely notice that there’s more money on the credit cards and there aren’t as many funds to pay it off entirely.”

“The price … really hurts”

Andrea and Adam Molina
Andrea and Adam Molina say they visit their family less because of inflation.
Robert Miller

Rising travel costs cut family gatherings for expectant parents Andrea and Adam Molina, both 34, of Jersey City, NJ.

“We used to go see my sister in Baltimore once every two months, but now it’s more like once every four months,” Andrea said.

“The price of renting a car and refueling it has become unaffordable.”

And the cost of public transportation isn’t much better, Andrea said.

“Even the train has become much more expensive,” she said.

“It’s almost $300 for the weekend just to get there and back.”

Adam, who joined his wife on a trip to see her obstetrician in Manhattan, said the couple had “taken a hit on groceries, which have become noticeably more expensive.

“The price per pound of meat really hurts,” he said.

“In reality, the cost of living – especially grocery and laundromat services – is rising even faster than inflation.”

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