Carl Icahn — an influential hedge fund manager — warned that the United States economy will experience a crisis due to rising inflation.
“In the long run we are certainly going to hit the wall,” Icahn told CNBC. “I really think there will be a crisis the way we are going, the way we are printing money, the way we are going into inflation. If you look around you, you see inflation all around you and I don’t know how you deal with that in the long term.”
CNBC states that Icahn was hesitant to make an official prediction about the timing for any inflation-driven fallout.
Icahn — who has a net worth of $22 billion and worked as Special Advisor to the President on Regulatory Reform during the Trump administration — has participated in corporate raids of firms such as Trans World Airlines and Marvel Comics.
Icahn is not the only business leader to express concern over rising price levels. Marc Rowan — the CEO of Apollo Global Management, which controls $472 billion in assets — said in another interview that inflation is affecting every portion of his company.
“There’s not a place [where we are not seeing inflation]. Everything that we once did now costs more,” Rowan explained. “Lead times, pressure on inventory, pressure on supplies, pressure on employment. Our experience in our portfolio is really no different than the broader economy.”
As the United States economy recovers from COVID-19 and the lockdown-induced recession, several important inflation metrics used by policymakers have hit record highs.
For instance, the Bureau of Economic Analysis revealed that personal consumption spending rose by $130.5 billion dollars in August — representing a 4.3% year-over-year hike in the Personal Consumption Expenditures Price Index. The statistic — used by the Federal Reserve to set its inflation rate targets — has risen for the past several months, hitting a 3.6% year-over-year growth rate by April before rising to 4.0% in June and 4.2% in July.
The Social Security Administration’s cost-of-living adjustment — increased yearly to reflect changes in price levels — saw a 5.9% hike for 2022. The change is in line with rates witnessed early in President Carter’s tenure — 5.9% in 1977 and 6.5% in 1978.
Several conservative policymakers are likewise concerned about the rising price levels. During a recent press conference, Gov. Ron DeSantis (R-FL) argued that inflation is more salient than most economists are willing to admit.
“This inflation is real. This inflation is upending a lot of things,” he said. “They said it was just going to be transitory — it’s not transitory. You look at how much things have gone up year-over-year — these are stiff increases, and it’s basically an invisible tax on the American people.”