I know what lockstep means but I'm confused with the phrase in bold. Does it mean both of them have increased or decreased, or what else because the next sentence doesn't say so?

"Since the early 1990s median U.S. household income and overall consumer inflation have marched in virtual lock step. Health care and education cost have grown faster, but prices for clothes, furnishings and food have generally increased less or no more than household incomes - benefiting the poor who suffered the most during bouts of high inflation."

Source: https://www.reuters.com/article/us-usa-Fed-inflation-analysis-idUSKBN19630N


"In lock step" means "in perfect synchronization".

"Virtual" just softens the "perfect" a little. Almost perfect synchronization.

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