Sunday, March 23, 2014

The "There Is No Inflation" Report (Soaring Beef Edition)

Prices for beef saw their biggest monthly change in February since November 2003.

(Chart via WSJ)


  1. Some of the increase in beef prices is due to inflation but I don't think that's the main reason. I live in West Texas, the (ordinarily) beef producing capitol of the world. We are three years into the worst drought since the 1950s. The last time beef production was this low was also in the 1950s. All the ranches have sold off their herds. It's even forced the shut down of a huge meat packing plant about 60 mi from my home. Consequently, there is no new beef entering the supply chain from West Texas. The huge drop in supply is undoubtedly the biggest factor in forcing up beef prices.

    It's not going to get better any time soon. The climatologists believe it could be several more years before the drought ends. Then it will take several more years after the end of the drought before the ranches can rebuild their herds and bring production back up to historic levels.

    1. There's also a major drought in California, which is a major player in agriculture. It hasn't rained very much this fall and winter here. I wasn't aware of a drought going on in Texas as well. This will definitely lead to price increases on food, on top of the actions of the Fed.

    2. But, but ... I am confused. I thought all price increases everywhere and always are a direct result of Federal Reserve policy. (Oh, but price falls never are.) Any other change to supply and demand in markets never matters according to Mr. Wenzel.

    3. You are confused. You need to read the EPJ Daily Alert, Wenzel consistently points out the other factors that influence prices beyond money supply growth. Milton Friedman is the economist that incorrectly made a direct correlation between money growth and price inflation, not the Austrians.

    4. Where, exactly, has RW stated that, Anon @ 9:46 AM?