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The Cost of Car Insurance Has Dramatically Increased Every Month This Year

The BLS has car insurance data but it's not seasonally adjusted. Nonetheless, let's take a look at what's going on.
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CPI Data from BLS, calculation and chart by Mish

CPI Data from BLS, calculation and chart by Mish

2022 Percentage Increases 

  • Jan: 1.09 Percent
  • Feb: 1.79 Percent
  • Mar: 0.83 Percent
  • Apr: 0.54 Percent
  • May: 0.36 Percent
  • Jun: 1.60 Percent
  • Jul: 0.94 Percent
  • Aug: 0.98 Percent

CPI Car Insurance Percent Change From Year Ago 

CPI Car Insurance Percent Change From Year Ago 2022-08

Over the past year, the cost of car insurance is up 8.72 percent and rising fast.

CPI Car Insurance Index Detail 

CPI Car Insurance Index Detail 2022-08

CPI Car Insurance Index Since 2012

CPI Car Insurance Index 2022-08

Between 2018 and 2020 the growth in car insurance rates leveled off. From the end of the pandemic, and especially starting in 2022 (lead chart) cost of insurance is on a tear with no end in sight.

What's Going On? 

Crime comes to mind. 

The New York Time reports ‘I Honestly Believe It’s a Game’: Why Carjacking Is on the Rise Among Teens

“I honestly believe it’s a game,” Mr. Majeed said. Stolen cars used to be stripped down, with the parts sold for cash, he said. Now people are carjacked, and the cars are often found afterward, crashed or just left on the street. “It’s a game.”

In the strange math of the past two pandemic years, as different kinds of crime have spiked and plummeted, carjacking has made an alarming resurgence. The number of reported incidents nearly quadrupled in Philadelphia from 2019 to 2021 and is on track to double this year; Chicago had more than 1,900 carjackings last year, the highest number in decades. Two months into 2022 the number of armed carjackings in New Orleans was already at two-thirds the whole year’s tally in 2019. Washington, D.C., where 426 carjackings were reported last year, is not an exception.

But none of this fully explains what officials say is the most troubling part of the trend: the ages of so many who have been arrested. Fourteen-year-olds, 12-year-olds, even 11-year-olds have been charged with armed carjacking or in some cases murder.

“It has been interesting over the course of my career to watch the mix of crime shift without seeming explanation,” Professor Ferrer said. “A number of these are crimes of opportunity, folks looking for that kind of low-hanging fruit.”

What is clear, he said, is that the long-term impact of the solitary and traumatic pandemic years on the development of adolescents cannot be overstated. Though schools are back to in-person learning and recreation centers are reopening, that impact — and the rise in carjackings — has not simply gone away.

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Any End in Sight?

Not that I can see. 

Auto insurance is similar rent. Primarily it goes up once a year or possibly every six months. Then it jumps in a single big adjustment that the BLS slices and dices into 12 buckets.  

For August, the BLS says car insurance is 2.4 percent of the CPI. At the pace it's rising it adds a tiny bit to the overall index every month.

Insurance an inelastic item. Unless you are willing to give up your car, there is nothing you (or the Fed) can do to influence this cost.

Stocks Hammered as CPI Rises a Mere 0.1 Percent More Than Expected

On September 13, I noted Stocks Hammered as CPI Rises a Mere 0.1 Percent More Than Expected

The CPI rose 0.1 percent in August and that was 0.1 percent more than economists expected.

See the above link for details.

This post originated at MishTalk.Com

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