Joe Biden’s Treasury Secretary Janet Yellen appeared Sunday on CNN to reassure Americans that the federal government is not losing control over inflation. She glibly said that she expected inflation to return to “normal” by the second half of 2022.
Without commenting on the impact it would have on inflation, Yellen said that Biden’s “Build Back Better” trillions upon trillions in new spending would be spread out over the next decade. In that context, she said that she does not think the government is “about to lose control of inflation.”
With the calm tone that government officials usually take when implying that they are in control of the economy in the first place, she added that inflation “will remain high into next year because of what’s already happened.”
She added that as the government makes “further progress” on the pandemic, she expects current supply chain shortages and bottlenecks to subside. She said that Americans will return to the labor force “as conditions improve.”
Amid surging inflation, the Federal Reserve that Yellen used to chair has promised to maintain interest rates at virtually zero levels until America has returned to full employment and consumer price inflation is back down to the Fed’s 2 percent target rate.
In addition to rising consumer prices for essential products like food, energy costs continue to rise while the federal government appears to have no plan for slowing inflation.
Gas prices hit a nationwide average on Monday of $3.38 per gallon, an increase during 2021 of about 50 percent. Global oil prices have shot up 70 percent at the same time.
Demand for gas and oil has increased as the COVID pandemic has subsided across the country. Supply is notably diminished as well, with U.S. domestic production well below levels during the Trump administration. OPEC is also constricting supply to manipulate prices and take advantage of America’s decision to cripple its productive capacity.
Meanwhile, the White House says that it has “few options.” Press Secretary Jen Psaki said Friday that “there are limitations to what any president can do.”