Tuesday, March 18, 2014

The Carter Era Returns

Return of the Misery Index

Inflation is starting to really mean something when it comes to food and energy.  The government stats on inflation conveniently omit food and energy when reporting things like the Consumer Price Index (CPI).  Let’s see what Janet Yellen has to say this week.  I bet she isn’t worried about inflation in the least.
US Consumer Price Index Chart
Whenever economic reports are released, the headline number is “without the volatile food and energy sector”. Food and energy are very volatile. As quick as prices can go up, they can come down. But, over the past several years there is one reason the price of energy isn’t going down-government regulation and policy.
For evidence, all you need to do is look at the arduous debate over things like the Keystone Pipeline ($CL_F). Environmentalists, who mostly caucus with Democrats have held it up. The EPA, OSHA and other government agencies are writing all kinds of expensive rules and regulations to make exploration, refining, and distribution of energy products cost more. That gets passed on to consumers.

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