Utah is in a favorable position with inflation below 4% and unemployment below 3%. While this inflation rate is above Utah’s 15 year average of 2.4%, the state’s current unemployment rate of 2.9% is also well below the 15 year average of 4.1%.

 

Figures 1 and 4 from the interactive dashboard: Current year-over-year inflation rate for all U.S. urban areas and the four primary inflation subcategories.

By the broadest measures, Utah’s economy is doing very well. That said, there are issues to consider. For example, shelter seems to be the primary driver of inflation, accounting for almost two-thirds of the total inflation rate.  Naturally, this is going to most adversely affect renters who are not locked into long-term mortgage payments. It is also important to note that housing costs represent the largest portion of household budgets – especially at the lower end of the income scale. Similarly, large jumps in prices in child care at 4.5%, baby food at 7.3%, and food in general at 2.7% can have an outside effect on low-income populations.

 

 

The Utah Foundation’s interactive dashboard allows residents is to:

  1. Explore current rates.
  2. Compare rates for Western and Mountain States urban areas.
  3. Break down the overall rate into major components.
  4. Highlight some specific factors of interest.

The interactive dashboards represent a point-in-time snapshot. Our full list of dashboards are included below:

You can also read additional Utah Foundation research on inflation and the economy at large.