Modern Living: Living & Dying

Beginning next February, the U.S. cost-of-living index will include the cost of dying, the Bureau of Labor Statistics has announced. Bestselling Author Jessica Mitford and all the current furor about the high cost of dying had nothing to do with it, insisted Bureau Assistant Commissioner Arnold E. Chase. Bureaucracy doesn't move that fast. Over a year ago, said Chase, the bureau decided to add the cost of funerals to the 300 items included in the monthly index, along with 50 other new additions. Among them: legal expenses, installment credit, hotel and motel rates.

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