Under the Biden administration, skyrocketing fuel costs and exploding inflation are hurting everyday Americans the most, according to an economist at the Heritage Foundation.
“Energy prices are trickling down into everything and American families are being crushed,” EJ Antoni, a research fellow for regional economics in the Center for Data Analysis at The Heritage Foundation, told the Daily Caller News Foundation.
Although the Biden administration touts nominal wage increases, inflation is weakening Americans’ purchasing power, even when one does not account for the rising prices of everyday items.
“The average worker has lost the equivalent of almost $3,400 in annual income since Biden took office,” Antoni explained
Real average hourly earnings decreased 3.6% from June 2021 to June 2022, according to recent Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) numbers. The change in real average hourly earnings combined with a decrease of 0.9% in the average workweek resulted in a 4.4% decrease in real average weekly earnings over this period.
“This is catastrophic, $3,400 is some people’s food budgets for a year,” Antoni continued
The Consumer Price Index (CPI) increased 1.3% between May and June and rose 9.1% over the last 12 months according to the DOL report released Wednesday. The index for food and energy items also increased 0.7% in June and was up 5.9 percent% over the year.
“That’s a 17.1% annualized rate,” Antoni said when referencing the new CPI statistics.
“To put those numbers into context, prices are now rising in one month as much as they were rising in a whole year when Biden took office.”
Record levels of inflation come amid spiking gas prices for the month of June as the Biden administration’s crackdown on fossil fuels and the war in Ukraine are causing fuel prices to rise to record levels.
“People underappreciate how the price of energy affects everything we buy, so when you artificially increase the price of energy, the trickle down from that is enormous,” said Antoni.
The White House did not immediately respond to the DCNF’s request for comment.
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