Generally speaking, there are three types of inflation rates: cost push inflation, demand pull inflation, and consumer price inflation. In this article, we'll discuss the cost-push and demand-pull rates. We'll also explore how expectations about inflation affect the inflation rate. We'll discuss the importance of this information to businesses, consumers, and governments.
Consumer price inflation
During the past two years, annual consumer price inflation rates in the United States have reached the highest level in decades. The inflation rate has climbed faster than economists predicted. However, the increase in the consumer price inflation rate is likely to slow down during the second half of the year. In fact, the rate is forecast to fall to just over 2% by the end of 2022.
Despite the increase in the consumer price inflation rate, it is important to note that the rate remains below the levels seen in the 1970s. The highest inflation rates occurred during the period following the 1973 Yom Kippur War in Iran and the 1976 oil price shock.
The rise in the consumer price inflation rate has left consumers with rising household bills globally. In addition to energy costs, the cost of housing and household services has also increased. In the 12 months to October 2022, the cost of housing and household services increased by 11.7%.
Shelter is a significant component of the CPI basket and accounts for approximately 40% of the total weight. In September, the cost of owner occupiers' housing increased by 6.4%.
In addition to the costs of housing, the price of food and non-alcoholic beverages have also increased significantly. This is reflected in the CPI(A), which climbed 2.3%. In terms of services, the increase was more moderate, with medical services up 1.0%, transport up 2.0%, and education up 0.5%.
In the United States, the consumer price inflation rate has exceeded the historic long-run average of 3.3 percent. In the past four years, the average CPI rate has been 6.1%, the highest level since the end of the Great Recession in 2009. The rise in the rate has been driven by the policies of the Biden Administration. In June, the Bureau of Labor Statistics reported a 10 percent increase in food prices.
The United Kingdom's inflation rate is currently below the historic highs of the 1970s. The highest rate during the period was 12.5% in March 1991. While the CPI rate has been above 6% in 29 of the 29 countries in the panel of consumer prices inflation rates, the level of inflation is still below those in the period following the 1970s.
Demand-pull inflation vs cost-push inflation
During a period of economic growth, it is possible to have demand-pull and cost-push inflation simultaneously. This happens when the aggregate demand is higher than the aggregate supply. The two types of inflation are similar in terms of how they impact the economy, but are not necessarily the same.
In cost-push inflation, the overall cost of production is increasing and the outputs are not keeping up. This is because companies need to increase prices to cover the rising costs of production. The supply side of the equation is also changing because of this. The emergence of new technological innovations can also lead to a spike in price.
On the other hand, demand-pull inflation happens when the demand for a particular product or service increases significantly. This often occurs when the economy is thriving. In a thriving economy, there are more jobs and people with higher incomes, which leads to consumers spending more money. The result is a higher rate of inflation.
A price-quantity graph shows the relationship between supply and demand. The graph is typically used to understand the magnitude of price increases. In an economy with a high unemployment rate, a sudden increase in employment may lead to increased demand for goods and services. The same can be said for a booming economy with low unemployment.
A similar scenario can occur in a thriving economy where businesses increase their spending and their employment levels. This leads to an increase in the demand for a variety of products and services. As a result, the suppliers need to raise their prices to keep up.
The main difference between demand-pull and cost-push is the source of the inflation. The supply-side of the equation is affected by monetary factors such as currency exchange rates and government spending. The demand-side of the equation is affected by real factors such as the availability of natural resources and technological innovations.
There are other examples of inflation, such as asset inflation, in-demand technology, and smart marketing. But the two most common forms are cost-push and demand-pull. If you are confused about what type of inflation is occurring in your economy, make sure you are informed about both.
Impact of expectations on inflation
Among the important variables in assessing the inflation outlook is how inflation expectations impact the real interest rate. These expectations are important because they provide information on the credibility of central banks. In turn, the level of expectations is crucial in determining the pace of price increases and whether prices will be transitory.
The original Phillips curve predicts a sharp drop in inflation. It is based on an assumed 2 percent inflation rate and has worked reasonably well over 25 years before the recent pandemic.
However, this assumption is not suitable for today. A more realistic approach would be to construct a measure of inflation expectations derived from a wide variety of sources. This measure should include both short- and longer-term forecasts. It should also take into account the effect of risk premia on asset prices.
The most accurate inflation forecasts in recent years have been produced by professional forecasters. Some of these estimates overpredict actual inflation for a number of maturities.
There are a few different inflation expectations measures, but some are better at anticipating future inflation than others. Those that are most reliable include the one-year and five-year-ahead measures, which are based on differences between nominal and inflation-indexed bonds.
Market-implied inflation expectations, which are based on the difference between spot and forward rates on inflation-linked government bonds, have fallen in the United States, Europe, Japan, and the euro area over the past several years. They have also declined in the Japanese and Swedish economies.
In contrast, consumer survey measures of inflation expectations have not shown the same trends. In many countries, surveys ask participants what rate of inflation they expect over a specified horizon. Some respondents may have biased expectations and their responses could differ from those of others. In addition, there are a number of factors that could affect the results of a survey.
The most comprehensive measure of inflation expectations is the five-year-ahead expectation indicator, which reflects the difference between the nominal and inflation-indexed yields on Treasury securities. The five-year-ahead inflation expectations indicator is 1.3 percentage points higher than before the pandemic.
High inflation rates have been disastrous
Several countries in the OECD have struggled to raise inflation in the aftermath of the Global Financial Crisis. They have had to take painful policy measures to bring inflation back to a reasonable level.
Turkey has experienced high inflation for years. The government has pursued unorthodox economic policies. Its consumer price index increased 54.8% in the first quarter of 2022.
Inflation can hurt purchasing power and make it harder to save for college or major purchases. Lower-income households can be pushed further into poverty when prices increase.
The COVID-19 pandemic has increased the cost of producing goods, driving up prices. Inflation can also erode real wages, leaving households struggling.
Some companies are more hesitant to invest in new products or expand their operations during times of high inflation. Gas stations and supermarkets do well during these times.
Some industries also do better during these periods. Consumers spend on food and other essential products during these times. However, the composition of these expenditures varies by income group. For example, the highest-income households spend about 20 percent of their income on food.
A recent Pew Research Center analysis found that most advanced economies have experienced consumer price increases. For example, Switzerland saw an inflation rate of 2.06% in the first quarter of this year. Israel had the fastest inflation growth in the last two years. The consumer price index increased 3.36% in the first quarter of 2020.
The Fed has raised interest rates several times this year. It is expected to keep raising them until the fed funds rate reaches 3.5%.
The increase in interest rates is expected to slow the economy. It is possible that the economy could enter a recession. But the Fed is predicting that inflation will decline once the rate increases are lifted.
According to a Reuters poll of economists, the chance of a recession was 40%. The Labor Department's consumer price index climbed to 4.2% in April. The increase in prices could reach 10% by the fall.
While inflation does not always hurt the economy, it does affect people's buying power. Those who are struggling to pay their bills may need to adjust their career plans, and those who recently escaped poverty may be pushed back.