The Consumer Price Index rose 4.2% in April, compared to a year earlier, increasing concerns about high inflation.
The index increase was the largest monthly since 2009 during the Great Recession and the highest level since 2008. Economists polled by Dow Jones and The Wall Street Journal had forecast a much smaller 0.2% rise.
"The stimulus checks, job market dislocations, and supply chain issues caused by the pandemic are short-term drivers of inflation, and the Fed will look past them in setting interest rates," said senior economist Bill Adams of PNC Financial Services.
A wide variety of goods and services are increasing at record rates such as used cars and trucks, tires, computers, televisions, furniture, toys, computers and airline fares, according to Market Watch.
Some economists worry the checks distributed to Americans to help them during the pandemic is also contributing to the inflation.
The cost of food is also rising twice as fast as it was before the pandemic. However, April gas prices reportedly fell, but are again on the rise with the national average now above $3 due to the pipeline cyberattack causing a shortage of the petroleum supply on the East Coast.