Signs of inflation are picking up, as more consumer products companies warn that supply shortages may lead to price increases. This according to a recent Bloomberg article.
“Rising prices and the potential for a response from central banks topped the list of concerns for money managers surveyed by Bank of America,” the article reports, adding that economists and central bankers believe price gains are temporary “and will be curbed by forces such as virus worries and unemployment.”
The article notes that Treasury Secretary Janet Yellen recently “ruffled markets with the observation that rates will likely rise as government spending ramps up.” Some businesses, it says, won’t wait for the temporary price increases to pass before raising prices for consumers. Higher cotton prices, for example, are pressing clothes-maker Carter’s Inc. to consider an uptick in pricing. Corn, soybeans and wheat are reportedly on the growing list of commodities seeing price hikes, and higher copper costs are hurting Chinese manufacturers—who are suffering delayed deliveries, bank loan defaults, and crippled production chains. The “red-hot” housing market has driven up lumber prices and the housing sector, the article says, “has been emblematic of the K-shaped recovery, with cost surges pricing out middle-income buyers while homeowners reap gains.”
The article concludes with a comment from BMO chief economist Douglas Porter, who said, “as rising inflation risks suggest, when you run things hot, you risk getting burned.