Inflation Reaches 9.1 Percent; CBC Dean Breaks Down What Comes Next
Posted Date: August 12th, 2022
PASCO, Wash. — Is the American Dream even affordable anymore?
With skyrocketing prices just about everywhere, supply chain issues and labor shortages, many Americans have been put in survival mode as inflation reaches 9.1 percent.
The Pew Research Center found seven out of 10 Americans believes inflation is the biggest problem in the country; that over gun violence, climate change and COVID-19.
“We’re experiencing this inflation, we are experiencing nominally what is a recession but there’s a debate about that, but the job market is extremely strong,” CBC Dean Jason Engle said.
Engle is a Dean for Organizational Learning at CBC but has taught macroeconomics at the school. He said the above reasoning is why officials are hesitant to declare a recession.
But, it sure feels like it. “When things go from two percent, and you’re at eight plus right now, it’s going to feel a lot different than you’ve experienced before right? And you may not be mentally prepared for that,” he said.
While officials said inflation is 9.1 percent, Engle said it probably feels worse than that, because the power of the dollar has decreased. “The purchasing power of an entry level wage, is lower than it used to be,” Engle explained.
Engle said wages are on the rise. “But, is that keeping up with inflation? And the answer for a lot of people is no,” he said. Communities also deal with inflation in different ways.
“If you used to get a large size, maybe you get a small. Get something cheaper, people substitute downwards during times like this just to get through,” he said. If there’s something to be learned during this time, Engle said it’s a good idea to expand education beyond high school.
“More important now than ever that people invest in themselves and what they can do and for the next five to 10 to 20 years, that’s math and science,” he said. Engle said years from now, a high school diploma alone may not be enough to ‘get by.’
If you’re feeling overwhelmed by everyday expenses costing more, Engle is confident we’ll see an improvement soon.
“We’re projecting lower inflation for this next year, and then lower inflation for the year after that — I think long term, these things even out.”
Source: Columbia Basin College