### 4.2 Inflation & the Consumer Price Index

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• Math Help

The United States Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) has an online calculator called the "CPI inflation calculator." (A screen capture of the calculator is shown below.) The calculator uses the average consumer price index for a given year. This data represents changes in prices of all goods and services purchased for consumption by urban households. For the current year, the latest monthly index value is used.

To use the calculator, follow the steps given below.

Note that for the years 2007 and later, the calculator uses index values rounded to three decimal places. Because the CPI given in Section 4.2 lists the numbers rounded to one decimal place, answers obtained using the calculator may differ from those shown in the text. For more information on the CPI, see the Math Help for page 162.

• Consumer Suggestion

If you're planning on investing your money in the future, but you're not sure where to start, you might want to consider investing in land. Buying inexpensive land can be a great investment decision. Check out sites like billyland.com where you can bid on cheap land for sale all over the United States.

Always make sure to do research on any land before purchasing. Sometimes people who sell land for cheap might owe a back tax, which is passed on to the buyer.

• Checkpoint Solution

The CPI was 16.3 in 1942 and 218.1 in 2010. If the value of the washing machine kept up with inflation, it would be worth

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