April saw the biggest inflation since 2008, but no need to panic

The Consumer Price Index rose 4.2% over last year. The big reason for the inflation, according to CNBC, is the economy is starting to wake up after retreating during the pandemic.

The increase in the headline CPI rate was the fastest since September 2008.

Energy prices overall jumped 25% from a year earlier, including a 49.6% increase for gasoline and 37.3% for fuel oil. That came even though most energy categories saw a decline in April.

Prices at the pump, which fell 1.4% in April, have resumed their climb in May, with the national average eclipsing $3 a gallon for the first time since November 2014, according to AAA. Further rises are likely from Friday's cyberattack that shut down Colonial Pipeline's main transmission line from Houston to New Jersey.

Used car and truck prices, which are seen as a key inflation indicator, surged 21%, including a 10% increase in April alone. Shelter, another key CPI component, was up 2.1% year over year and 0.4% for the month.

This chart from The Washington Post, shows why comparing April 2021 to April 2020 is misleading. Prices dipped in April 2020, making the rate of inflation look more ominous than it actually is: