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Ways to balance your budget as the world reopens

Reports show U.S. inflation is at its highest since 2008.

GREENSBORO, N.C. — Reports show U.S. inflation is at its highest since 2008.

The rising cost of gas and food is being felt by many including Financial Professional Scott Braddock of Scott Braddock Financial.

He said he recently had to pay more for chicken wings at one of his favorite spots.

“I’m friends with the owner, I was talking to him and he said you know the cost of chicken has gone up, so he had to raise the cost of some of his items including chicken wings,” Braddock said.

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This is called inflation.

“That means that our purchasing power decreases,” Braddock explained.

“We have to spend more dollars in order to buy the same products we’re used to buying each and every month.”

According to the Labor Department, consumer prices increased nearly a percent last month and prices are up 5.4 percent since last year.

As the world continues to reopen, Braddock encourages others to make a new written budget.

“Something that they can focus on because when we make quick decisions on these short financial cycles or focused too much on inflation that dictates the financial decisions whether that’s investing or saving,” Braddock said.

“Often that leaves the investor burned.”

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He also suggested having an emergency fund for the unexpected.

“I recommend three to six months of expenses saved in an account separate from all the others,” Braddock said.

“You know folks who had those in place prior to the pandemic understand the value of those.”

Braddock said consumers should prioritize paying off debt.

“Start paying off those highest interest rate debts first,” Braddock said.

“You’ll start to build up a lot of momentum sort of like an avalanche and get that momentum going that you need to pay down debt.”

Though inflation is high right now, Braddock said report show it’s not here to stay.