PHILADELPHIA (CBS) – At the Italian Market, Wally Giordano has been in the produce business for decades, but lately the cost of doing business has soared.
“It’s been bad all the way around,” said Giordano. “People are shocked by the prices. Things have tripled!”
His family produce store has had to raise prices to match the rising cost of oil and gas.
“Most of our stuff gets trucked in from California, Texas, or Mexico.”
The oil fields of the Middle East may be thousands of miles away from Philadelphia, but the unrest there has pushed the price of a barrel of oil over $100. That forces the price of gas higher, making things harder for truckers like Samuel Matias.
“The price keeps going up for gas,” exclaimed an exasperated Matias.
That cost trickles down to everyone else. Cappuccio’s Meats has already had to raise their prices because of shipping costs.
“You try to hold your prices as long as you can, but there comes a time when prices rise fifty cents or a dollar a week – not a dime or a nickel – where you have to raise your prices,” said manager Dominick Crimi.
Businesses say they have no choice but to charge more when fuel surcharges keep going up.
“At one point it was a dollar, two dollars per delivery,” said Dave Brown, manager at Talluto’s Authentic Italian Food. “Now it’s eight or nine dollars per delivery.”
Experts say the price of oil will not slow down the economic recovery unless oil prices surge much higher. But they warn the rising cost of everything else could ruin consumer confidence.
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Reported by Oren Liebermann, CBS 3