Wednesday, September 28, 2016

Americans enjoy grocery bargains

Intense supermarket competition in regional markets has sent grocery prices spiralling down in the United States.

In Austin, Texas, the Randalls chain slashed prices for boneless beef ribs by 40 percent, to $3.99 a pound.

The H-E-B chain countered at $2.99 a pound.

Albertsons advertised “buy 1 get 1 free” specials on “USDA Choice Petite Sirloin Steak.”

Wal-Mart offered a dozen eggs for $1.14 at its store In North Bergen, New Jersey, but a mile away,  Aldi was selling eggs for 99 cents a dozen.

A year ago, when avian influenza reduced U.S. flocks by tens of millions of hens, prices where $3 or more a dozen.

Food prices have fallen for nine straight months in the U.S. It’s the longest streak of food deflation since 1960 -- with the exception of 2009, when the financial crisis was winding down.

Analysts credit low oil and grain prices, as well as cutthroat competition from discounters. Consumers are winning out; grocery chains, not so much.