Inflation

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Usually, we talk about inflation in airy-fairy terms. A disincentive to save, or a sop to borrowers, or a way of inflating away debt (usually governmental). The picture above is two identical packs of 40 Iceland sausages, one I bought a few weeks ago, the other that I just discovered in the bottom of the freezer. This is really what inflation means. You get less for your money. This information is usually quite hard to discern, the general upward trend in prices hidden somewhat by retailers playing with the margin, upping prices for BOGOF deals, computing with each other and all the things they do to make their shop the most attractive. Discount retailers like Iceland operate a slightly different model, keeping to round pound price points as much as they can for the own-brand products that make up most of their offer. This affords us a look at the cost of sausages (assuming that the costs involved in changing the size of sausages (and presumably other frozen manufactured foods) is a disincentive to changing them often as other retailers do with prices, which is a simple day-to-day task. I make this assumption fairly confidently as I actually noticed the sausages were smaller as soon as I took one out of the bag, I just didn’t have an old pack to hand until tonight.).

Compared to a few months ago, GBP2 gets you 400g less sausage. Actually quite a high proportion of the pack size. And that’s what inflation is. Every time the government prints a few more pounds to pay for some dumb scheme, increase costs for businesses or raise fuel duty, they don’t just attack hauliers, or fat cats, or “the rich” they take food out of YOUR mouth.

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