Updated 12/11/2021 I frequently receive this question in one form or another: Why doesn't the government consider food and energy and just tracks core inflation? The core inflation rate is frequently quoted in the popular press, and this gives the general public the impression that the "government" doesn't care about (or track) the rise in the prices of food and energy. Actually, this isn't true. The core inflation rate is simply a component of the overall inflation rate. Economists use it because seasonal factors often skew the inflation rate. For instance, a drought might cause fruit crops to fail, causing fruit prices to rise. But this rise actually has nothing to do with … [Read more...]
Inflation Rises — But no one notices?
In October 2006 the annual inflation rate (CPI-U) was 1.31% and it was 50% higher at 1.97% in November. Yet on the same day the data was released Yahoo Financial News reported in an article entitled "Stocks Rise on Inflation Data"that Inflation was flat. Their exact words were "The Labor Department said consumer prices were flat in November rather than up 0.2 percent as analysts had expected. Core inflation, which excludes volatile food and energy costs, was also unchanged." How can a 50% increase in the inflation rate be considered "flat"? … [Read more...]