News and Commentary

July Inflation Remains At Last Month’s Record-High Levels
WASHINGTON, DC - JULY 16: The U.S. Treasury Building, photographed on Friday, July 16, 2021 in Washington, DC.
Kent Nishimura/Los Angeles Times via Getty Images

The inflation rate in July remained at 5.4% — matching the previous month’s levels.

According to data released by the Bureau of Labor Statistics on Wednesday morning, year-over-year inflation last month reached 5.4% — equaling its June rate, which was the highest since the Great Recession.

The agency says:

The Consumer Price Index for All Urban Consumers (CPI-U) increased 0.5 percent in July on a seasonally adjusted basis after rising 0.9 percent in June, the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics reported today. Over the last 12 months, the all items index increased 5.4 percent before seasonal adjustment.

The indexes for shelter, food, energy, and new vehicles all increased in July and contributed to the monthly all items seasonally adjusted increase. The food index increased 0.7 percent in July as five of the major grocery store food group indexes rose, and the food away from home index increased 0.8 percent. The energy index rose 1.6 percent in July, as the gasoline index increased 2.4 percent and other energy component indexes also rose.

Over the past year, average energy costs have risen by 23.8%, with gasoline and fuel oil seeing price hikes of 41.8% and 39.1% respectively. Meanwhile, prices for used vehicles have risen by 41.7%.

“I’m over here laughing at everyone for investing in stocks and Bitcoin,” quipped Senate candidate J.D. Vance. “I bought a 1999 Honda Civic last year and now it’s worth $2 million.”

Beyond the energy and transportation sectors, food companies are increasing prices in an attempt to match rising price levels.

In Tyson Foods’ third-quarter earnings call, CEO Donnie King told investors that the firm has “seen accelerating and unprecedented inflation” threatening all of its business units. It will therefore raise retail prices on September 5 — even though it previously raised prices for restaurant customers.

Nestlé — the world’s largest food and beverage company — unveiled that it will also raise prices to keep pace with inflation. CEO Mark Schneider explained to journalists that “what we’ve seen this year is some kind of a turning point, where after several years of low inflation, all of a sudden it accelerated very strongly.”

As The Daily Wire recently explained, American workers are seeing declines in real wages as a result of inflation — despite robust wage growth following COVID-19 and the lockdown-induced recession.

The Bureau of Labor Statistics reported last month that “average hourly earnings” in the United States rose by 3.6% between June 2020 and June 2021. Nevertheless, when considering year-over-year changes in the Consumer Price Index, “real average hourly earnings” have diminished by 1.7% over the past year.

Vance added that “the Trump years saw the first sustained wage growth for the middle and working class in a long time.” Inflation, however, “will destroy that progress.”

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