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#8 News 2022

Inflation Surged at the Fastest Pace in 40 years. What Will It Mean for Consumers?

January 18, 2022

Inflation Surged at the Fastest Pace in 40 years. What Will It Mean for Consumers?

Ask Students: Why does inflation impact people’s day-to-day lives? How does the Federal Reserve work to stabilize prices during periods of rapid inflation?

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Summary

The last time inflation rose 7 percent annually was back in 1982 and the latest consumer price report shows costs are continuing to spike. That is presenting real questions for the Federal Reserve, which is tasked with promoting stable prices. Mary Daly, president of the Federal Reserve Bank of San Francisco who also sits on the committee that decides interest rates, joins Judy Woodruff to discuss.

Discussion Questions

  • What record has inflation set in the past year?
  • Who is interviewed in this piece, and what is her background?
  • Why does inflation impact people’s day-to-day lives?
  • How does the Federal Reserve work to stabilize prices during periods of rapid inflation?
  • When does Mary Daly expect inflation to slow to normal levels?

Focus Questions

What are the tradeoffs suggested in this interview in deciding how to slow inflation? Do you think it’s more important to slow inflation or keep the economy growing (including adding jobs and growing wages)?

Media literacy: What do you think the photo accompanying this piece is supposed to suggest about the dangers of inflation? Do you think it is representative of reality for most Americans?

girl looking at empty grocery store aisles
A beef display case is seen nearly empty at a Giant Food grocery store as the U.S. continues to experience supply chain disruptions in Washington, U.S., January 9, 2022. REUTERS/Sarah Silbiger
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