Study: Seattle-Tacoma-Bellevue metro area ranks 5th in nation for rising inflation



(The Center Square) – On the same day the federal government said inflation has reached its lowest point in more than two years, personal finance website WalletHub released a report listing the Seattle-Tacoma-Bellevue metropolitan area as the No. 5 metro area in the nation where inflation is rising the most.

The Seattle-Tacoma-Bellevue metro area earned its fifth-place finish with an overall score of 66.68.

To determine its rankings of 23 metro areas across the country in its Wednesday report, WalletHub looked at changes in the Consumer Price Index over the past two months, as well as changes over the last year. An important economic metric, the CPI is a monthly measure of U.S. prices for household goods and services.

WalletHub analyst Jill Gonzalez spoke about some of the factors accounting for the Seattle-Tacoma-Bellevue metro area’s ranking.

“The Seattle-Tacoma-Bellevue metro area has the 5th highest rise in inflation. It maintains its spot on the 5th position, with a 4.60% increase in inflation compared to last year, and a 1% spike in the past two months,” she reiterated in an email to The Center Square. “While things are slowly settling down due to the constant Fed rate hikes, the Seattle-Tacoma-Bellevue metro area’s recovery from high inflation continues to be a lengthy process.”

The 3% inflation figure the government reported the same day was down sharply from a 4% annual rate in May, though still above the Fed’s 2% target rate.

In its efforts to lower inflation, the Fed has raised its benchmark rate by a substantial five percentage points since March 2022, the steepest pace of hikes in four decades.

The year-over-year inflation figure for June is the smallest such increase since March 2021, when the current round of extremely high inflation began as the economy forcefully emerged from the COVID-19 pandemic.

“The inflation seems to be declining steadily,” Gonzalez observed. “Even though the Fed hasn’t yet reached its 2% goal, it’s still an improvement. The rate hikes will most likely continue over the next year, but if we can safely avoid recession, they might succeed in taking control over the inflation.”

The five metro areas where inflation is rising the most:

1. Tampa-St. Petersburg-Clearwater, Florida

2. Atlanta- Sandy Springs-Roswell, Georgia

3. Detroit-Warren-Dearborn, Michigan

4. St. Louis, Missouri-Illinois

5. Seattle-Tacoma-Bellevue, Washington.

The five metro areas where inflation is rising the least:

23. Anchorage, Alaska

22. Boston-Cambridge-Newton, Massachusetts-New Hampshire

21. Urban Honolulu, Hawaii

20. Baltimore-Columbia-Towson, Maryland

19. Minneapolis-St. Paul-Bloomington, Minnesota-Wisconsin

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