April 1, 2011
Feeling pain at the pump?
Gas prices have doubled since Mr. Obama took office. According to the GasBuddy gasoline price tracking web site, the price of a gallon of regular gas was around $1.79 when Mr. Obama took office.
Today the national average is $3.58. The lowest average price in the continental United States is $3.31 in Tulsa Oklahoma, the highest is $4.14 in Santa Barbara, CA. Four-dollar-a-gallon gas has arrived on average throughout California, and a number of other states are headed in that direction.
Consumer price index (CPI) figures from February show an unadjusted 12 month gasoline inflation rate of 19.2%, but in the last month alone prices jumped 6.8%, probably because of oil price increases due to instabilities in the Middle East. If the trend continues, gas prices would double again within a year.
100% gasoline price inflation is nothing to brag about, but imagine Mr. Obama going into the 2012 election having to explain why gas costs $7.00 a gallon. I’m sure the White House would spin it as one of their “Green” initiatives.
March 19, 2011
One would think that after the worst financial crisis since the Great Depression, Americans could at least catch a break for a while with deflationary forces keeping the cost of living relatively low. That’s not the case.
A special index created by the Labor Department to measure the actual cost of living for Americans hit a record high in February, according to data released Thursday, surpassing the old high in July 2008.
The Chained Consumer Price Index, released along with the more widely-watched CPI, increased 0.5 percent to 127.4, from 126.8 in January. In July 2008, just as the housing crisis was tightening its grip, the Chained Consumer Price Index hit its previous record of 126.9.
“The Federal Reserve continues to focus on the rate of change in inflation,” said Peter Bookvar, equity strategist at Miller Tabak. “Sure, it’s moving at a slower pace, but the absolute cost of living is now back at a record high in a country that has seven million less jobs.”