The government is expected to report on Friday that consumer prices climbed by 8.2 percent in the year through May, as inflation hovers near the fastest rate in four decades.
Americans are confronting more expensive food, fuel and housing, and some are grasping for answers about what is causing the price burst, how long it might last and what can be done to resolve it.
There are few easy answers or painless solutions when it comes to inflation, which has jumped around the world as supply shortages collide with hot consumer demand. It is difficult to predict how long today’s price surge will drag on, and the main tool for fighting it is interest rate increases, which cool inflation by slowing the economy — potentially sharply.
The latest Consumer Price Index will be released at 8:30 a.m. Eastern.