WASHINGTON—Inflation hit another nearly 40-year high in December. Consumer prices rose 7% from the same period a year earlier and 0.5% from November. The core price index over the past year jumped to 5.5%, the highest rate since 1991. The cost of living rose far more quickly than the 4.7% rise in average hourly wages over the past year.
Joel Griffith, a research fellow with The Heritage Foundation’s Roe Institute for Economic Policy Studies, released the following statement Wednesday responding to these disastrous numbers:
“As millions of Americans are experiencing, inflation can be the most destructive and painful tax of all. Lower-income families and working Americans are being especially hard-hit by skyrocketing prices because they spend a greater proportion of their income on things like energy and used vehicles, which are rising faster than the overall rate.
“For nearly two years, oppressive COVID-19 mandates suppressed the supply of goods and services. The elimination of work requirements for some welfare programs, overly generous unemployment benefits, and rounds of school shutdowns dramatically reshaped the economy, reduced the size of the workforce, and put massive strain on supply chains. Meanwhile, the Biden administration proposes to permanently expand government spending through the Build Back Better Act, on top of trillions in new spending in recent months.
“The White House has been asleep at the wheel, and Americans will continue to pay for the Biden administration’s reckless disregard for their wellbeing until there is change. This inflation is not going away, the administration’s claims to the contrary notwithstanding. They have been wrong about almost every economic forecast so far—this time will be no different.”