Gas & used vehicle prices jumped more than 40% in one year

JACKSONVILLE, Fla. — Inflation is hitting every sector of the economy, but gas and used cars are seeing some of the steepest cost increases.

They’ve both increased more than 40% since last year.

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Mercedes Conty only put $25 in her tank Thursday.

The 7.5 gallons isn’t enough to fill her tank, but it’s become the norm now that gas prices have climbed to well over $3 a gallon.

“That’s the way you make it day by day,” said Conty.

She might consider buying a new, more fuel-efficient car to cut back on gas costs, but that’ll cost more now too.

“So, one of these trucks at $18,000 today probably would have been closer to $15,000 two years ago,” said Jason March, GM of March Motors on Atlantic Boulevard.

March told us he is also feeling the effects of inflation as a result of rising car prices.

“It’s costing us more to buy the unit, and that drives our price up,” said March.

New car prices have jumped more than 12% since last year, while used cars have skyrocketed 40.5% since January of 2021.

“Firms are having difficulty getting supplies. They’re having difficulty hiring workers. So, they just have price pressures all along the supply chain and now we’re really seeing that every single thing we buy,” said UNF economics professor Madeline Zavodny.

Zavodny said global issues like the trucker protests in Canada could compound the problem in the near future by further reducing the supply of new vehicles.

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“So that means it’s going to be even more difficult to get a new car. So then, used car prices go up and we’ll just start seeing more and more of this go on I fear,” said Zavodny.

And as for Conty, she doesn’t need a degree in economics to see where the trend is heading.

“This is not going down, this is going up,” said Conty.

Zavodny predicts high inflation isn’t likely going anywhere any time soon.

She said even some of the more predictable measures the federal government can take, like increasing interest rates, often take years to put a significant dent in inflation.