"I feel like I'm on a hamster wheel" — US cost of living has skyrocketed since 2020

Prices on just about everything in the United States have gone up — way up. Here are some figures from an article in Bloomberg titled, "Just How Bad Is the US Cost-of-Living Squeeze? We Did the Math"that reveal how much prices have jumped since 2020:2020:

  • Groceries = 25%
  • Pets = 17%
  • Electricity Bills = 25% (51% in California)
  • Natural gas = 29%
  • Rent =+20%
  • Used Cars = 35%
  • Car Insurance = 33%
  • Child care = 32%

Bloomberg interviewed several U.S. residents about their finances. Here's one person they spoke to who is struggling with debt:

Leslie Shuffleton, a personal trainer in Palm Desert, California, had no other debt besides a mortgage payment heading into the pandemic. Since then, the combination of investing in her business while shouldering a sharp Covid-driven slowdown, plus rising prices and property taxes, has driven her family to accumulate some $75,000 in debt.

She's been shuffling that money on new credit cards since, trying to avoid the surge in borrowing costs, while she waits for her stock holdings to increase in value.

"I absolutely want to make sure that when that promotional rate is over, that I have the ability to shuffle it over to another card for a promotional rate again," Shuffleton, 54, said. "It's just a real circus, and it's a real dance that I would like to not have to do."