Wholesale prices soared again last month to their highest level on record as inflation continues to spiral out of control.
The Labor Department on Tuesday said the producer price index, which measures inflation at a wholesale level before products are sold to consumers, rose 10% in February from a year ago.
“Core inflation at the wholesale level, which excludes the more volatile measurements of food and energy, increased 0.2% for the month, following a 0.8% increase in January. Over the past 12 months, core prices were up 6.6%,” Fox Business reported. “Gasoline prices, which soared 14.8% in the month, accounted for nearly 40% of the February increase. Overall, prices for goods jumped 2.4% last month, while prices for services remained the same.”
The rate of inflation grew in February by nearly 8% in the last year, with prices for everything from gasoline to bread, milk, and eggs soaring.
The consumer price index increased 7.9% over the past 12 months, hitting a 40-year high, according to the Labor Department’s Bureau of Labor Statistics. That’s the fastest pace since January 1982.
Meanwhile, earnings fell again, according to the bureau’s data. “Real inflation-adjusted average hourly earnings for the month fell 0.8% in February, contributing to a 2.6% decline over the past year, according to the BLS. That came even though headline earnings rose 5.1% from a year ago, but were outweighed by the price surge,” CNBC reported.
Biden refused to take responsibility, instead blaming the decades-high inflation plaguing America on Russian President Vladimir Putin’s recent invasion of Ukraine.
“At the same time, today’s inflation report is a reminder that Americans’ budgets are being stretched by price increases and families are starting to feel the impacts of Putin’s price hike,” Biden said in a statement. “A large contributor to inflation this month was an increase in gas and energy prices as markets reacted to Putin’s aggressive actions.”
But two notable economists from both ends of the political spectrum said Biden is dead-wrong in the assertion.
John Tamny, director of the center for economic freedom at FreedomWorks, told The Daily Wire that the president is confusing “rising prices” with “inflation” and that the commander-in-chief has many avenues he can use to tackle both. Even former President Barack Obama’s car czar, Steven Rattner, claimed that Biden needed to “own” the inflation and quit blaming Putin.
Gov. Ron DeSantis (R-FL), a frontrunner for the 2024 GOP presidential nomination, criticized Biden, calling on him to “unleash American energy production” in order to mitigate the still-climbing energy costs.
“The U.S. hit another 40-year inflation high in February. Bidenflation is driven by skyrocketing energy prices, which fuel price increases throughout the economy, not just for gas. Biden needs to unleash American energy production!” DeSantis tweeted, along with a graph showing the dramatic increase in energy costs.
Joseph Curl has covered politics for 35 years, including 12 years as White House correspondent, and ran the Drudge Report from 2010 to 2015. Send tips to [email protected] and follow him on Twitter @josephcurl.