Heritage Economist: Inflation Outpaces Earnings for Fourth Straight Month

Heritage Economist: Inflation Outpaces Earnings for Fourth Straight Month

Nov 14, 2023 1 min read

WASHINGTON—The Bureau of Labor Statistics today released the consumer price index (CPI) data for the month of October, showing 3.2% inflation over the last year while core inflation was 4%, twice the Federal Reserve’s 2% target rate. Since President Joe Biden took office, the CPI has risen over 17%, an annualized rate of almost 6%.

Heritage Foundation public finance economist EJ Antoni issued the following statement in reaction:

“October was the fourth consecutive month of inflation outpacing monthly earnings growth. For 27 of the last 31 months, prices have risen faster than annual earnings. This decline in real earnings coupled with elevated borrowing costs from today’s higher interest rates have cost a typical American family the equivalent of about $7,400 in annual income under the Biden administration.

“This situation is the direct result of the Federal Reserve failing to maintain the dollar’s stability while the Congress and the White House fail to exercise any fiscal restraint whatsoever. Multi-trillion-dollar deficits, which were allegedly a one-time measure during the 2020 pandemic, have now become a structural problem in federal finance, exploding the federal debt.

“The interest cost alone on that debt is becoming so out of control that it already consumes 40% of all personal income tax revenue and is almost twice as large as it was a year ago. Annualized interest payments exceed $1 trillion and are growing rapidly.

“Congress cannot afford to kick the can down the road any further. The time for spending cuts is now, and they need to be steep. Sycophants in the Biden administration may claim the debt and deficit are insignificant, but we’re approaching the point where the debt snowballs out of control—that’s when it’ll be too late to fix the problem.”

As the nation’s largest, most broadly supported conservative research and educational institution, The Heritage Foundation has been leading the American conservative movement since our founding in 1973. More than 500,000 dues-paying members support our vision to build an America where freedom, prosperity, opportunity, and civil society flourish.

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