Inflation in the U.S. continues to remain red hot as consumer prices last month increased sharply to 8.5% in March compared to the same month last year. Metrics show the Bureau of Labor Statistics’ (BLS) Consumer Price Index (CPI) spiked last month at the fastest pace since December 1981.
Inflation Continues to Hammer the US Economy — White House Blames Putin
The latest data from the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics shows that inflation has continued to rise month over month in the United States. BLS published the organization’s latest CPI numbers and inflation has spiked a great deal since last year. According to the latest CPI numbers, consumer prices in March jumped to 8.5%.
The data follows February’s CPI numbers which showed a 7.9% annual increase in February. Last month’s annual rise was 0.8% higher than the year prior, while March saw a 1.2% jump. According to a Bloomberg data report, “consensus economists” expected an 8.4% increase for March.
Just before the CPI data was released, the White House said that it expected inflation to be “extraordinarily elevated.” White House press secretary Jen Psaki blamed the inflation on Vladimir Putin and Russia when she said: “We expect March CPI headline inflation to be extraordinarily elevated due to Putin’s price hike.”
On Tuesday, the economist and gold bug Peter Schiff told his 686,700 Twitter followers that inflation will not be transitory. “The 8.5% YoY gain in March CPI is the highest since 1981, when interest rates were 20% & CPI was 13.5%,” Schiff tweeted. “Current interest rates are .25%, and using the 1981 CPI the YoY gain is likely 17%. With real rates negative 16.75% now, versus positive 6.5% then, inflation is here to stay.”
We’re now entering the part of the monetary experiment where even millionaires feel poor.
A Few Economists Expect an Inflation Peak Soon
Andrew Hunter, senior U.S. economist at Capital Economics thinks the March increase will “mark the peak” for inflation. “The big news in the March report was that core price pressures finally appear to be moderating,” Hunter said in a note sent to CNBC.
Ian Shepherdson, chief economist at Pantheon Macroeconomics told CNBC in the same report that the latest BLS CPI data is “encouraging.” “Overall, this report is encouraging, at the margin, though it is far too soon to be sure that the next few core prints will be as low; much depends on the path of used vehicle prices, which is very hard to forecast with confidence,” Shepherdson remarked. “We’re sure they will fall, but the speed of the decline is what matters.”
Joe Brusuelas, chief economist at RSM US told CNN the March numbers might be closer to a peak. “Yes, inflation may soon find its peak. However, that does not imply significant relief is on the way in the near term,”
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