BY The Western JournalMay 11, 2022
2 years ago

New Inflation Numbers 'Hotter Than Expected' One Day After Biden Tried to Shift Blame

Another month has ended, and the new inflation numbers have been released.

CNN noted that President Joe Biden is "on the defensive" over rampaging inflation as it continues to burn through Americans’ wallets. In April the Consumer Price Index posted an 8.3 percent increase after an 8.5 percent increase in March, according to CNBC.

The increase topped the prediction from Dow Jones that April would only show an 8.1 percent increase.

The CPI has a so-called core measure that eliminates food and energy costs, which are more volatile. That measure rose 6.2 percent, above predictions of a 6 percent increase.

Inflation continued to hit workers, whose wages adjusted for inflation dropped .1 percent, despite a .3 percent gain in hourly pay. Although wages have risen 5.5 percent in the past year, earnings adjusted for inflation have fallen 2.6 percent.

Experts found little good to report.


“We’re starting to see energy pull back a little bit, but it’s not enough,” said Kathy Jones, chief fixed-income strategist at Charles Schwab. “The markets were hoping for a better number, and it’s not good enough to rule out more Fed tightening.”

“With the annual rate ticking down from 8.5 percent to 8.3 percent, it can be tempting to say we’ve seen the peak, but we’ve also been head-faked before as was the case last August,” said Greg McBride, chief financial analyst at Bankrate, according to the New York Post.

On Tuesday, Biden attacked Republicans, who are a minority in Congress, for not rubber-stamping his pet projects and insisted that his policies were helping Americans beat inflation, according to CNN.

Biden said his tax proposals will benefit Americans in the future while claiming that his efforts to release one million barrels of oil per day from the Strategic Petroleum Reserve and allow more ethanol in gasoline were helping to address rising gas prices.

However, on Wednesday, gas prices as measured by AAA hit a record high for the second day in a row, hitting a national average of $4.404 for a gallon of regular unleaded gas. The 18-cent increase in the average price of gas over the past week was not factored into the April CPI report.

Many experts said even if inflation is no longer rising, there is nothing to indicate it is easing substantially.

"This is another upward inflation surprise and suggests that the deceleration is going to be painstakingly slow," said Seema Shah, chief strategist at Principal Global Investors, according to Fox Business. "The focus will soon start shifting from where inflation peaked to where it plateaus, and we fear that it will plateau at an uncomfortably high level for the Fed."

“The peak of inflation may be behind us, but today’s CPI report points to a long, slow descent or maybe even a plateau around 8 percent,” said Robert Frick, corporate economist at Navy Federal Credit Union, according to Bloomberg.

“Services inflation was strong across the board, keeping core inflation elevated even as the pandemic-related excess in the goods sector has begun to subside. That underscores how the Fed’s delay in raising rates has helped make inflation more sticky," economists Anna Wong and Andrew Husby said, Bloomberg reported.

This article appeared originally on The Western Journal.

Written by: The Western Journal



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