Americans need extra $11K to afford same standard of living in 2021, Republican analysis finds

A recent analysis of government data shows that the average American household may need to spend more than $11,000 annually to maintain the same standard of living they achieved in January 2021 – right before inflation started building.

Government data from the Consumer Price Index and Consumer Expenditure Survey was compiled and examined by Republican members of the U.S. Senate Joint Economic Committee.

The analysis found that prices increased 13.8% from January 2021 to November 2022, costing the average American household $747 in November 2022 alone. 

Annually, the data also revealed that the typical household must spend an additional $11,434 annually to maintain a similar standard of living experienced in January 2021.


File: Women looks over her budget and expenses. (Credit: Getty Images)

According to the data, families in the Mountain West (Arizona, Colorado, Idaho, Montana, Nevada, New Mexico, Utah, and Wyoming) are facing the highest inflation rates, with prices that are 16.5% higher than in January 2021.

Due to a combination of higher inflation rates and higher average household spending, the analysis found that inflation is imposing the greatest monthly costs on families in Colorado, Utah and Arizona. Annualized, these families are facing inflation costs of $12,065, $11,708, and $10,724 over the next year, respectively.

The findings underscore the financial burden many families have been facing amid high and ongoing inflation.

But the Biden administration has called the analysis "flawed," citing federal labor data.

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"Fourteen million more Americans have jobs today than when President Biden took office and household disposable income is up by almost $21,000 since December 2020," a White House spokesman said in a statement to CBS MoneyWatch. "And what Congressional Republicans pushing this one-sided study won't admit is that their proposals would raise costs on the middle class and cut Social Security and Medicare so they can give rich special interests more tax giveaways."

The government reported earlier this month that job growth slowed more than expected in October. Employers added just 150,000 jobs last month, while the unemployment rate ticked up 3.9% — the highest level in two years.

A new analysis by Glassdoor also found that a growing number of employees lost access to 401(k) retirement plans, dental insurance, vision insurance, tuition assistance and other benefits this year. 

This story was reported from Los Angeles.