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Back To School Shopping Meets Inflation

Here we are, the week before teachers begin returning to the classroom, and we're seeing just how bad inflation is hitting parents as they go shopping for school supplies. Teachers who are already having to pay out of pocket for classroom materials are seeing their costs go up, too (I have some Amazon Wish Lists available for some local teachers if you want to help).

But just how bad is it? Via NBC News:

The National Retail Federation, a retail trade group, estimates U.S. shoppers will spend $37 billion this back-to-school season, matching last year’s record, with households averaging $864 apiece. With inflation at a four-decade high of 9.1%, the share of consumers expecting to shell out more than $500 on school-related purchases this year shot to 25% from just 7% last year, a Morning Consult poll found in May and June.

But some consumers’ buying power is waning faster than others’. Wealthier shoppers are still capable of spending at levels that outstrip inflation, while less affluent people are struggling to afford higher prices, according to the NRF. Higher-income households are largely driving the expected jump in back-to-school outlays this year. Families with budgets unaffected by inflation are forecast to spend about 32% more on school-related purchases than in 2021, according to a report last week from commercial real-estate services firm JLL.

Among mid-to-low-income households, the outlook is murkier. Families whose budgets are significantly affected by inflation plan to spend 15% less than last year on back-to-school shopping while those somewhat affected by inflation will spend roughly 6% less, according to JLL. The NRF still sees less affluent households boosting rather than trimming their spending to start the school year — but with more belt-tightening elsewhere to do so.


But the economic news of the day doesn't just stop there.

The Top Economic Stories Of The Day

Here, in no particular order, are some key stories you need to be aware of.

On consumer confidence, via National Review:

The Conference Board Consumer Price Index, which reflects consumer’s business expectations for future months, stands at 95.7 points, down from last month’s 98.4.

The Present Situation Index, showing the current business expectations of consumers, fell to 141.3 from 147.2 in June. The Expectations Index, which predicts the shot term business expectations, also fell, going down to 65.3 compared to 65.8 last month.

Good News For Republicans

At least one of their Senate headaches may be going away. Eric Greitens, the former governor with a major sex and blackmail scandal in his recent past, is losing his edge in the polls.

Republicans can breathe a huge sigh of relief. The state's attorney general, Eric Schmitt, is the right choice for Missouri.

Headlines Of The Day

  • Democrats Are Livid at Disney-Owned Hulu Over Political Ads (RedState)
  • Ukraine Figures Out Russian Intelligence Plot Because One Of Their Pilots Had A Girlfriend That Was Way Too Hot For Him (Barstool)
  • The Fed could surprise markets by sounding even more aggressive as economy teeters (CNBC)
  • How Every State Pro-Life Law Handles Ectopic Pregnancy and Miscarriage (National Review)
  • Democrats Funding an "Ultra MAGA" Candidate Again (Erick Erickson/Substack)

Tweet Of The Day

10 Tips To Safely Drive Through School Zones In Lafayette

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