Bidenflation Dips in July But Remains Stubbornly High

Though still riding at nearly a four-decade high, inflation gave a sign of slight easing Wednesday morning after months of almost continual climbing. The Bureau of Labor Statistics reported the Consumer Price Index (CPI) for July came in at 8.5%.

That is not only down from June’s 9.1% but also below the consensus expectation of 8.7%. President Joe Biden was quick to seize upon this as great news for working Americans. So, the president takes a victory lap over 8.5% inflation?

Like exorbitant gas prices, it’s amazing that 8.5% inflation is cause for celebration, but that’s where the Biden economy has taken the country. It’s been since the very early Reagan years since inflation this high gripped the nation.

But now Americans are supposed to feel thankful.

Food prices climbed another 1.1% and shelter costs gained 0.5%, but they were more than offset by dropping energy prices. Across the sector, prices fell 4.6%, and this was led by a downward trend at the gas pumps.

After hitting a record high of $5.01 per gallon of regular gasoline on average in June, pump prices finally fell 7.7% in July. Even so, energy is still 32.9% higher in July 2022 than in July 2021.

The Core CPI, which removes the more volatile energy and food components of the index, stayed unchanged from June’s 5.9% annual rate. That number was expected to come in at 6.1%, marking another slight surprise for economists.

July’s Core CPI worked out to a 0.3% monthly gain as opposed to the expected 0.5%.

Biden’s answer to the historically high inflation rate was to get Senate Democrats to ram through an exorbitant spending bill without a single Republican supporter. It took Vice President Kamala Harris’ tie-breaking act to get past all 50 GOP senators.

That’s because conservatives know that pouring more wasteful spending into the economy is bad for inflation. That’s basic economics, but that’s also good for Democrats who use the federal coffers merely as campaign funds. Inflation is simply someone else’s problem.