U.S. Representative Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez (NY-14) isn’t sure if the price increases the United States is seeing has to do with inflation concerns.
“When you look at what actual prices are going up, it’s in very specific sectors,” AOC said during an interview with CNN on Monday night. “If this was an overall inflationary issue, we would see prices going up in relatively equal amounts across the board no matter what the good is.”
Prices for various U.S. goods have increased recently, such as cars, meat, lumber, housing and gas.
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“But we know its getting expensive,” Ocasio-Cortez continued. “Things like the cost of lumber, items like cars, whether they are new or used and other sorts of items that rely on shipping and shipping containers coming in from overseas. These are very sector specific, which means that these are due to supply chain issues.”
The COVID-19 pandemic has wreaked havoc on supply chains from across the country. Industries like retail, agriculture and housing have all been impacted by supply chain disruptions related to the pandemic.
As Ocasio-Cortez noted, lumber prices have been on the rise. Prices were at record highs in 2021 before stabilizing in recent months — the cost of lumber
went up over 300% between April 2020 and May 2021.
Used-vehicle prices soared by 10.5% in June, following similarly strong gains of 7.3% in May and 10% in April. The June increase was the biggest one month increase since 1953.
Partially due to concerns over the Delta variant and inflation, U.S. markets tumbled on Monday. The Dow Jones Industrial Average
fell 725.81 points, or 2.1%, to close at 33,962.04, its biggest one-day percentage and point drop since Oct. 28, 2020. The S&P 500
dropped 68.67 points, or 1.6%, to end at 4,258.49, while the Nasdaq Composite
shed 152.25 points, or 1.1%, finishing at 14,274.98 — the worst day for both indexes since May 12.
Jerome Powell, chairman of the Federal Reserve, has stated that pandemic-related shortages and bottlenecks are behind recent price spikes. He predicts inflation will ease as the U.S. economy continues to reopen.
“Inflation has increased notably and will likely remain elevated in coming months before moderating,” Powell said on July 14.