by Brittany Raymer
Digital Writer & Editor
Secretary of the Treasury Janet Yellen recently told “60 Minutes” that while “gas prices are way down,” inflation will last until the “end of next year.” Though inflation did cool in November, the idea that it’ll be another year of higher-than-average prices until 2024 and recession still a possibility is not comforting.
When inflation first started making waves and raising alarm bells, the Biden administration famously had a different take about the possibility of long-term inflation.
In a speech given on July 19, 2021, President Biden said, “We all know that as our economy has come roaring back, we’ve seen some price increases. Some folks have raised worries that this could be a sign of persistent inflation. But that’s not our view.
He continued, “Our experts believe, and the data shows, that most of the price increases we’ve seen are expected to be temporary.”
Given that we’re still talking about inflation over a year later, his comments have not aged well.
And apparently, the situation may still persist for at least a year.
Here’s Yellen’s exchange with CBS correspondent Norah O’Donnell:
Janet Yellen: Gas prices are way down. I think we’ll see a substantial reduction in inflation in the year ahead.
Norah O’Donnell: It’s gonna take a year?
Janet Yellen: Well, I believe by the end of next year you will see much lower inflation. if there’s not– an unanticipated shock.
Norah O’Donnell: But for families who are paying more at the grocery store, when 2023 comes around, do they need to be worried about a recession?
Janet Yellen: There are always risks of a recession. The economy remains prone to shocks. But look, we have a very healthy banking system. We have very healthy business and household–
Norah O’Donnell: So you don’t–
Janet Yellen: –sector.
Norah O’Donnell: You have said this, you do not believe there will be a recession next year.
Janet Yellen: There’s a risk of a recession. But it certainly isn’t, in my view, something that is necessary to bring inflation down.
Are you comforted? No, me either.
Businesses are also concerned, with many instituting layoffs in mass to streamline bloated departments and to buffer themselves against “unanticipated shocks,” as Yellen herself so eloquently put it.
Thankfully, North Carolina remains one of the world’s, yes the world’s, best economies. According to a report, North Carolina economy ranks just behind Belgium at No. 24.
That doesn’t mean the Tar Heel State is shielded from international economic turmoil, but the state is perhaps better prepared that most to deal with the shocks.