Media highlights ‘stubbornly high’ August inflation, ‘despite’ gas prices: ‘unwelcome news’ for Biden

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The New York Times, The Washington Post and others reported Tuesday that August inflation numbers were “stubbornly elevated.” Falling gas prices, Grocery prices rose 0.7%.

The Times reported that price increases “were not as modest as expected in August, unpleasant news for the Biden administration and the Federal Reserve and a sign of how rapidly climbing costs are hurting consumers.”

Economists had expected inflation to ease between July and August, but it rose 0.1% on a monthly basis.

“While gas prices and used car and truck prices have begun to decline, other prices are rising fast enough to fully offset the decline: Prices rose 0.1 percent on a headline basis last month, as did prices for restaurant meals. Rents and new vehicles rose,” the New York Times reported.

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General Mills and Quaker cereal aisle at the grocery store.
(Lindsey Nicholson/UCG/Universal Images Group/Getty Images)

Inflation increased by 8.3% in August Since last year. Inflation increased by 8.5% in July.

“Many economists had hoped that falling energy prices in recent weeks would be enough to moderate inflation, but government data released on Tuesday showed how big price hikes continued for staples that are a central part of most households’ budgets,” said a Washington Post report on the inflation numbers.

The report noted that the 8.3% headline number was “more than expected given the sharp decline in gasoline prices in recent weeks.”

The Associated Press and NBC News described the August numbers as “stubbornly high” or “stubbornly elevated”.

“U.S. inflation eased for a second straight month on a sharp drop in gas prices, but most goods except energy rose in August, a sign that inflation is weighing heavily on American households,” the AP report said.

In a statement after the inflation numbers were released, Biden said, “Overall, prices in our country have been basically stable over the past two months.” He said there was still a lot of work to be done and that “some of the price increases” were down “from the previous month at the grocery store.” Food prices rose 11.4% from last year, the highest increase since 1979, according to the report.

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People shop at a supermarket as rising inflation affects consumer prices in Los Angeles, California, US, June 13, 2022.  REUTERS/Lucy Nicholson

People shop at a supermarket as rising inflation affects consumer prices in Los Angeles, California, US, June 13, 2022. REUTERS/Lucy Nicholson

The media also noted that inflation plays a “political role” in the interim. “Inflation Report Undercuts Biden’s Efforts to Celebrate Economy,” read a New York Times headline.

The Washington Post Americans are feeling good about the economy as gas prices fall. “Inflation has been losing some steam with voters lately,” the report said.

“Yet signs that inflation may have peaked — or will soon — boost Democrats’ chances in the midterm elections may have already contributed to slightly higher public approval ratings for Biden. In his speeches, Biden has generally stopped short of mentioning the impact of higher prices on family budgets,” the AP said.

US President Joe Biden spoke at a rally organized by the Democratic National Committee

US President Joe Biden spoke at a rally organized by the Democratic National Committee
(Photo by True Anchorer/Getty Images)

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Biden, during comments on Monday At Boston’s Logan International Airport, he praised the drop in gas prices and said they were seeing “promising signs” of inflation slowing.

“I said last spring that our top economic priority was to reduce inflation without giving up all the gains American workers have made over the past year. But there’s still a lot to do — a lot more to do. We have to have faith in the American people. We’re on the right track, we’re seeing real progress,” He said.

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