Alex Witt   |  May 25, 2013

Why PBR beer prices have increased

USA Contributor Regina Lewis breaks down the week’s "3 Big Money Headlines" with MSNBC’s Alex Witt. She explains why fewer people are hitting the road this Memorial Day weekend. Lewis reports the good news from the housing market and the importance of smart inventory. She reveals why the prices of Pabst Blue Ribbon increased.

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This content comes from Closed Captioning that was broadcast along with this program.

>>> now to our three big money headlines. planes, trains and automobiles. moving on up. hipster hangover. joining me live " usa today " contributor regina lewis . welcome to you. let's get with memorial day weekend travel here. fewer people are expected to hit the road this year?

>> it looks like it. i think the verdict is out. definitely fewer people expected to hit the skies. about 2 million. it is very much a driving holiday to the tune of 30 million people. hitting the road. i think at this time of year, what's interesting, alex, is the summer feels long and people have fluctuating incomes. they're confident but not that confident. so, they say you know what? we've got to just make sure we've got some in reserve for fourth of july. and so that we don't run out come labor day . we also see people having fuel efficient cars for commuting and renting larger vehicles for their family. an suv, for instance, for weekends like this.

>> what about the housing market ? it's starting to turn around, it seems.

>> this is good news all around i think. what's really interesting is a lot of data out, one of the points that i thought was most striking is the average new home now is $330,000. that's new construction. the median is also quite high. so a year ago when we started to see the toll brothers of the world come back in the game it was at a much lower price point. what all the construction companies and builders are trying to do now is really preserve prices. they don't want to have that situation. you'll recall in 2008 , i can remember driving around and screaming out my car window , stop building. because there were just too many homes and some of them went into distress sales. it's nice to see this methodically turning around. and inventory is the key there. and they're going to build smartly. and probably conservatively in terms of numbers.

>> what about beer? you're going to pay more for it this holiday weekend.

>> we are especially the red, white and blue pabst blue ribbon . i can remember my uncles drinking this growing up. they drank it because it was cheap. now it's cool. so this is a classic example of a retro brand on the low end, names like this, are up 7%. to your point about being more expensive. and that's in the last seven months. because microbrewery, everybody's got their favorite lagger these days because that category is high and expensive, it is pulling up this lower tier. if you could be a cool enough brand. and apparently this red, white and blue pabst is the coolest of the cool.

>> okay. well, leave it to you 20 give us hat kind of info. i appreciate it. have a good weekend.