Is Inflation Starting to Peak?

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(Note: Stay tuned until the end of this post for a fun give away!)

Inflation. It’s everywhere, affecting everything from gas to groceries to rent, and it doesn’t seem to be disappearing anytime soon.

Just last week, the US Bureau of Labor Statistics released their inflation report for June 2022, and US consumer prices clocked a nose-bleed inflation level of 9.1%, the highest in about 40 years.

Inflation surged to a new pandemic-era peak in June, with US consumer prices jumping by 9.1% year-over-year, according to fresh data released Wednesday by the Bureau of Labor Statistics.

US inflation hit 40-year high in June, driven by record gas prices, CNN.com

Inflation sucks, in some ways even worse than high unemployment. After all, even in a bad economic downturn when unemployment spikes, not everybody loses their job. But when inflation is this bad, everyone is affected.

Central banks around the world have responded in the only way they know how: By spiking interest rates and trying to slow down the economy. This has caused the real estate market to crash and seriously spiked anxiety amongst over-indebted home owners, but still inflation doesn’t seem to be coming down. Why, you might ask, are we sacrificing if the end result is more inflation, not less?

OK, I get that sentiment. I really do. But here’s the problem.

Inflation is always caused by multiple competing factors but at the end of the day this current economic crisis is the fault of high input costs. Gas is expensive, which makes commodities like wheat and copper expensive, and supply chains are over-allocated causing everything from cars to televisions to cost more. But the really annoying thing about our current supply-side issues is that there’s a pretty significant delay between a government or central bank doing something and it’s actual effects showing up at the gas pump or grocery store.

A long response loop makes any problem way more difficult to solve. Imagine if every time you tapped your brakes, it took your car ten minutes to slow down. How hard would it be to drive? You certainly couldn’t go anywhere very fast, because if an obstacle showed up in front of you, you wouldn’t be able to stop in time. The only way to safely get anywhere would be to go super, super slow.

And that’s with just a ten minute delay. The delay for inflation measures to show up in the real economy is measured in months. That’s why governments around the world are forced to move so slowly. And unfortunately, in an age where we’re all used to news being beamed to our phones seconds after something happens, we just don’t have the patience anymore to wait for that long.

However, there are actually signs that all these measures central banks are taking are have an effect on inflation. You just have to know where to look.

Gas Prices are Falling

The story of inflation in 2022 begins with gas prices. The period of 2020 to 2022 saw demand for gasoline plunge to the point where a barrel of crude oil traded for negative dollars, then rebounding to the point where airports can’t keep up with the flood of revenge travellers. There’s no way that transition would have been smooth under the best of circumstances. And oh yeah, then Russia invaded Ukraine, which of course made everything worse (as wars tend to do).

Something interesting has happened lately, though. Oil prices have come off their highs.

Source: WTI Crude on Barchart.com

That’s right. Oil just broke below the all-important $100 USD-a-barrel support line.

To see why this is so significant, check out what happens when we overlay the average gasoline price per gallon (orange line) with the crude oil price per barrel (blue line).

Source: Crude Oil Vs. Gasoline @ Macrotrends.net

Looking at this chart, two things are glaringly obvious. First of all, the last two times crude oil broke below $100 USD in 2008 and 2014, gasoline prices at the pump fell precipitously soon afterwards. And secondly, gas prices are trading way too high relative to crude oil right now. Oil is below $95 USD a barrel, yet gasoline is selling for $4.49 a gallon? That’s way too high. If history serves as a guide, gasoline should be selling below $3.50, so if current trends hold we should be seeing a pretty large price drop at the pump soon.

Supply Chain Issues Are Easing

Another interesting phenomenon the financial media loves to talk about are supply chain issues, but what exactly does that mean? And how do you measure that?

One way of measuring supply chain stress is in freight prices. Since most consumer goods are shipped into Canada and the US in 40-foot shipping containers and transported by massive cargo ships, the price shipping companies charge per container is a useful metric that encapsulates many different factors that go into supply chain bottlenecks: Gas prices, labor shortages, and port delays are all captured by the price per freight container.

That price per freight index shot up like crazy, going from about $1200 USD per container to a nosebleed $11,000 in September 2021. A few months later (remember that delay we talked about?), inflation reared its ugly head. How could it not? Everything cost nearly 10x to get across the ocean!

That price pressure is also starting to ease.

Freight prices, as measured by the FBX (yes, that’s totally a thing) is showing the price to ship a container across the ocean peaked in late 2021, and then started coming down. This was helped by falling oil prices, but more importantly by companies themselves hiring more crew, port workers, and infrastructure people, which in turn brought more ships that had been sidelined by the pandemic back online. Now, importers who previously described having to stay up until midnight to bid on an increasingly shrinking stockpile of empty cargo containers no longer have to do that, and prices have come down accordingly.

At a little of $6k per container, prices have dropped about halfway between their nose-bleed levels in September 2021 and their steady-state price of about $1200. There’s likely more room to drop, but we should start seeing the price of everything from food to toys start to drop as well.

Interest Rate Hikes Are Starting To Work

And finally, what about all these interest rate hikes that central banks have been doing? Are they working, or are they just making thing worse?

Anecdotally, it’s not hard to find stories of over-extended home owners freaking out that their mortgage costs are going up, and are forced to forgo vacations in order to pay off their debts. As FIRECracker would say, “Good. Stay out of my travel spots!”

But is that effect widespread enough to make a difference to inflation? The short answer is: It’s starting to.

The effect can already be seen in a drop in consumer sentiment.


Source: US Consumer Confidence Index @ Tradingeconomics.com

The US consumer sentiment index is a measure of how households feel about the economy, and when it comes to economics, feelings do matter. If you are feeling great about your own personal financial situation, you may be inclined to go out and buy something cool, like a boat or an ATV. But if you think a recession might be around the corner (and recession warnings are a dime a dozen these days), you might think twice about buying a new car.

We’re already seeing this effect show up in spending data.

Tellingly, consumers showed less ardor for buying cars, homes and major appliances, as they shift from purchases of big-ticket goods to more spending on services.

Consumers Feel the Effects of Rising Inflation and Interest Rates, US News.com

Interestingly, while overall consumer spending has remained relatively unchanged so far, the things people are spending on has changed, from big-ticket items like cars and refrigerators to lower-priced, locally available things like services. This is exactly what central banks want, since this takes the demand pressure off things that need to be shipped (like cars) and more towards things that don’t (like services).

What’s Next?

I know, we’re all sick of inflation and wish it would just go away already, but we have to remember that it took time for inflation to show up, and it’ll take time for the solutions that governments and central banks have implemented to work it’s way through the supply chain.

The trick, of course, is that any unforeseeable world event could potentially appear and blow everything up again. An escalation of war, a natural disaster, or a new COVID variant could shut everything down again. I really hope it doesn’t happen, but who knows? I don’t have a crystal ball.

But as of right now, if things keep on going the way they are, the conditions are there for inflation to start to come down soon.

We all need to be patient, but help is on the way.

What do you think? Do you think that the measures world governments and central banks are taking to bring inflation down will be successful? Or could they be doing more? Let’s hear it in the comments below!


Announcement: Who wants to win a free book?

I’m excited to announce that my friend Dr. Jordan Grumet, also known as “DocG” from the “Earn and Invest” podcast has a book coming out on August 2nd, 2022 called Taking Stock: A Hospice Doctor’s Advice on Financial Independence, Building Wealth, and Living a Regret-Free Life.”

Written by a hospice doctor with a unique front-row seat to the regrets of his dying patients, this book will remind you to take stock of life now, before it is too late. The goal of financial independence is to have the economic fuel to live a full life and avoid regret.

Jordan has gracious committed 3 copies of his book to give away on our blog today! All you need to do is answer the question “What’s the best unnecessary thing you ever spent money on?” in the comments below and we’ll randomly pick 3 winners!

Note: Due to shipping costs, physical copies will be limited to American readers and international readers will be eligible to receive an e-book. Good luck, everyone!


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150 thoughts on “Is Inflation Starting to Peak?”

  1. Best “unnecessary” thing is always travel/activities. Just got back from a 3-week road trip with my husband and our 5 yo twins. We had a great time and spent a lot of the car ride back yesterday talking about where we all want to go next!

  2. In the 1970’s, inflation would ebb and flow for the better part of a decade. At times, it was as low as 3.3% and then it would surge to as high as 13 or 14%. It wasn’t just a one and done type of deal. We’ll see if that process repeats itself or not.

  3. A roomette on the train to see the beautiful (and long) pacific coast rather than the cheaper (and quick) airfare.

  4. Best unnecessary thing was Robot vacum cleaner. I had a vacuum already, so really felt guilty for spending money, I was provoked by Black Friday sale. But actually, it did change my day to day life. House is cleaner and we all fight less about chores.

  5. The best unnecessary thing I ever spent money on was a not too big but beautiful home with my partner that will make a great place to take in and help foster children grow

  6. I bought a scooter just as the Ukraine War broke out. I barely ever drive my car anymore, I love riding it rain or shine. $20 fill ups next to trucks filling up over $200 is the best feeling!

  7. The best “unnecessary” thing I’ve ever spent money on is my dog. (Although I didn’t technically “buy” him, there were-and continue to be-expenses incurred, from adoption fees to vet/medical bills to food and treats to training courses to cute holiday outfits-which he would be fine if I didn’t buy him–those are for my own amusement :). He brings me joy on a daily (hourly!) basis and without a doubt, any money I have spent on him has been an investment in my own happiness.

  8. Best unnecessary thing giving 1k to a lady who loved photography. Her well paid boyfriend bought her piece of crap camera. She took a class at local community college and bought a nice camera. She was inspired someone believed in her.

  9. Not trying to get free book. (I wish the winner a great read!)

    Commenting on the blog post. I agree. I think inflation is easing. The question is how much and how quickly. The answers to those two questions are important because they drive whether the Fed keeps raising rates and trips us into a recession or not. I don’t have a prediction. Beyond my skill!

    1. Best unnecessary thing: google nest hub. It’s nice to be reminded of all the places I’ve been with people who matter to me. Sometimes we’re so busy making memories, we forget to treasure them.

  10. The best unnecessary thing I bought was a trip to Macchu Picchu. It was the best thing since that’s where we got engaged and now married.

  11. Jewelry from my home country.

    I am quite thrifty with my money and rarely buy/wear any jewelry. However, this spring I visited my homeland after 5 years absence. On a whim, I bought a handmade silver necklace with pomegranate pendant (a traditional symbol of bounty and fertility). I am not sure when will be the next time I visit and see my family. But each time I touch the necklace, it brings back warm memories.

  12. Dinner at L’Atelier de Joel Rubochon in Last Vegas. It was an incredible experience—aesthetics as well as taste!

  13. the best unnecessary thing I ever spent money on was comma 3(comma.ai). A self driving dev kit using an open source software gives the compatible car best level 2 autonomy in the industry.

  14. I would say a dog. It was costly, but I have always wanted a pet. It was unnecessary for FI but it has taught me a lot about life, patience, and love.

  15. “What’s the best unnecessary thing you ever spent money on?”

    I would answer: a camper van.

    My husband and I went from having a home/mortgage to being debt-free and living smaller. We didn’t have to purchase the van in order to achieve a simpler life with more meaningful experiences but it’s been a purchase that has added so much value beyond the aspect of money. We’ve been able to visit national parks, travel to new states, go exploring each week instead of just a couple times per year, spend quality time with one another making memories, and just enjoy the simple things of life like nature and campfires.

    Additionally, thank you guys for your blog posts, book, and overall inspiration that continually helps my husband and I with our lifestyle and financial goals. We appreciate you both and the F.I.R.E. community so much!

  16. My husband’s motorcycle, we live in Canada and he can only ride at most half the year…but he loves it!

  17. Best Unnecessary Thing:

    This has got to be my ‘Air Fryer’!

    I can bake everything in my oven that comes for FREE! However, the time saved with the Air Fryer is life changing I’d say.

    Love your blogs!

  18. My best unnecessary thing was a new bike (previously rode second hand ones) which in the end dramatically increased how much I ride and my fitness levels!

  19. I bought two 300GB hard drives in 2005 (giant at the time) for about $600 total to store all my burned DVDs and music. I was convinced I needed them and they were a great purchase. I barely used them since streaming took off and sold them 7 years later for like $100 total. That taught me a very valuable lesson about impulse purchases that has stuck with me to this day.

  20. Several sessions with a financial coach! It was horrendously expensive and felt unnecessary for me (I was an early adopter and I thought I knew everything about FIRE) but I hoped it would finally get my partner and me the same financial page.

    WOW did I learn a lot more than I thought. I credit those sessions with saving our relationship — we are getting married in a few months. 🙂

    Best “unnecessary” expenditure of my life.

  21. Awesome article.

    I know there is a lot of home ownership hate within the FI community but ..
    The best unnecessary thing I ever spent money on would be…
    “Upgrading to a new home”.

    We could have stayed in our 1700 sqft home which was very close to being paid off but we needed more space for our 2 kids. My wife and I are generally home bodies as well so it made sense to put our money into the one thing that would give us the greatest satisfaction – a new home.

    If you have all you need to make you happy at home there is less need for a get-away.

  22. best unnecessary thing I bought is my gym membership .. I’ve had one since 16 .. I’m 55 .. without my health my wealth is irrelevant as I wouldn’t be able to hike and bike my way thru my travels .. it also provides me a social component and many friends I’ve made as I’ve lived and worked in many cities ….

  23. Every dinner or lunch my young daughter asked me to buy at a restaurant because she was tired of having to eat the same unvaried diet her father put in the fridge or cupboard; because though it didn’t matter to him and his bias’ he didn’t realize that the moments spent sitting quietly with her once we were there, inside a booth and able to communicate and enjoy each others company, the sweet moments that are oh so fleeting and would of been missed had I listened to my frugal voice.

  24. Some very expensive and impractical leather heels. I am normally not a shoe person, but these have made me happy every time I look at them or wear, for several years now. 🙂

  25. My best unnecessary purchase: Amex Platinum credit card. High annual fee, although the MR points kind of paid for it during 1st year, but the access to airport lounges made air travel soooooo much better

  26. Great article. I’m ready for inflation to subside. Fingers crossed about no big world events….

    The best unnecessary thing I’ve spent money on is a weekly massage! So it’s even a recurring cost! However, I work hard and want my body to remain happy with me- it’s so worth it!

  27. Thanks for another great article! Best unnecessary thing I’ve ever spent money on is a little 3-foot-tall money tree that I picked up at Ikea on a whim. Seven years and FIVE homes later, “Earl” is living his best plant life and has almost grown as tall as the ceiling!

  28. Best unnecessary thing?

    The $1.5 million that my wife and I donated to charity over the last 15 years. It wasn’t necessary but it sure did feel good to help the health care and arts organizations that we have prioritized over that time.

  29. Best Unnecessary purchase this past week:
    A wine blending experience with my mom and husband. It was a fun activity to do together and walked out with a personalized bottle of wine. Spendy but worth it.

  30. Phew. A lot of good answers here! Some answers have deeper meaning and values, some are a little more superficial. Nice variety!

    To me, pretty much everything that comes after safety, food, shelter and meaningful relationships is “unnecessary luxury” – beautiful, indeed, but not necessary. That leaves a lot of room for unnecessary spending…

    My most recent unnecessary item is the bench vise I used during my appreticeship as a young boy twelve years ago. It had some issues and was about to be scrapped. I just started looking for a bench vise since I finished building my work bench the week before when I ran into it. I bought it from my company for scrap value (90lbs/40kg of cast iron!), fixed the issues, repainted it and now it’s the eye-catcher of my own little shop. Knowing that I used it more than a decade ago and saved it from being scrapped gives me satisfaction. And it was just about to get scrapped when I started looking for a bench vise… it seems that maybe it was meant to be in my little shop 🙂

  31. Best unnecessary purchase? Travel for sure!! We spent a month in Europe with our kids a few years ago, and the relationships and memories from that trip are a regular source of inspiration and gratitude.

  32. We leased a second car for 5 years and it made life more manageable. At the time we had 2 kids and a hectic schedule with both of us working and kids in competitive sport. Managing it with 1 car would have been a nightmare. Our car lease ended timely during the pandemic.

  33. Many years ago I bought a guitar. No one else in my family ever played one before and my commitment to learning a new instrument quickly vanished after the initial purchase high wore off. Needless to say, it sat in a closet for a few years until I eventually offloaded it.

  34. best unnecessary thing I bought is avocado toast! sure I could just have eggs and bacon for breakfast like a commoner but avocado is just oh so creamy.

  35. The most unnecessary thing I ever spent money on was a fancy apartment in the suburbs. “Buy as early as you can and buy as much house as you can afford”, so the aledgedly wise advised me at the time. It turned out I didn’t want to live there long enough to even justify the purchase, and ended up selling it for a loss. Lesson learnt the hard way.

  36. My best unnecessary expense was PRK laser eye surgery. It’s so great to not need contacts or glasses, especially for travel and sports, but I could have managed with those options so this wasn’t necessary.

    Also for some reason my low light vision is now phenomenal. Very cool bonus.

  37. Thanks for the succinct inflation article! The best unnecessary thing I’ve spent money on would be my robot vacuum. Bought it on sale, and with a cat and dog, it gets used multiple times a week. I affectionally refer to it as part of the family!

  38. Best unnecessary purchase? Spending money especially to travel, to spend time with friends and family. Zoom and WhatsApp connections are great, but it’s not the same!

  39. Lasik surgery over ten years ago was a great unnecessary purchase. I am an avid backpacker and it has been wonderful to wake up at night and see the stars. Plus, I don’t have to carry solutions and lenses.

  40. Thanks for another good article.

    Like a few other posters, my best unnecessary purchase is more travel. We never regret any of it.

  41. 1. Home Remodeling (its purely driven by emotions)
    2. Income Tax ( income from one spouse’s job is good enough. And hence I have time to read a free book)
    3. Subscriptions for Investment Club Services (services the provide stock and bond recommendations. Index funds are sufficient)

  42. UK Chautauqua 2019! It changed our lives, and it was great timing before COVID began.

    This is such a helpful post and I look forward to reading Doc G’s book!

  43. Anniversary dinner at Michelin starred Korean steakhouse in NYC, Cote. It was soooo expensive since we had the full Omakase and wine-pairing, but it blew my mind and it was unnecessary money spent in the best way: a wonderful experience

    https://www.cotenyc.com/

    P.S. We greatly enjoyed your wife’s book and also your posts. Thank you!

  44. The best unnecessary thing I’ve ever spent money on was without a doubt taking my retired mom to France in September 2019. In hindsight, considering the impending pandemic, I feel so fortunate and grateful to have had this “unnecessary” vacation with family when I know we may not ever have the same chance again. Many unnecessary purchases preceded this one, and I’m sure there are many more to follow, but I have no hesitation in awarding this one the title of “Best”. My mom had a great time and we made so many memories together.

  45. Prompt:“What’s the best unnecessary thing you ever spent money on?”

    Answer: Paying for a professional photographer for our Vow Renewal.

    Rylee and I were married in 2020 with a 10 person ceremony and backyard reception. Finally, in May of 2022, we were able to celebrate with family safely, via a 2 year Vow Renewal ceremony.

    We have lost a few family members in the last two years since we were married, so we spent handsomely on a professional photographer to capture family portraits and candid photos with the people we love to capture the memories forever.

    10/10 would recommend!

  46. Not sure I can narrow it down to one “best” thing but right now I am really loving my “unnecessary” central A/C unit.

  47. A lovesac couch. I’m a total cheapskate when it comes to furniture and home stuff, usually buying things on craigslist or getting them free on the street. The lovesac couch is a ridiculous unnecessary luxury, but frickin awesome!

  48. I always appreciate when you both write posts. Thank you for this one, it will certainly be a fun discussion with the fam.

    The best, unnecessary things (aside from travel and food) that I’ve spent money on was a hand bound and stitched leather journal and a ceramic smoking bowl.

  49. $35 toy chicken for a dog we’re looking after for a couple of months. She loves that chicken. It’s the best!

  50. My PlayStation 2. Unnecessary yes! hours and hours of fun I never regret spending. Hell yes! long live the console

  51. The best unnecessary thing we ever spent money on is a one-year backpacking trip around the world for our honeymoon in 2012! It was the most unbelievable year of our lives, we can still remember so many of the details, where all the years since have smooshed together.

  52. A moka pot. It’s nice waking up and brewing a fresh cup of coffee in the comforts of my own home. : )

  53. Best unnecessary thing was flying my niece out for a visit. She was having a hard time at home and transitioning to college. She felt a little lost and we thought a change of environment would be good for her.

  54. For me, it’s mostly experiences with family & friends. So I’d say the best unnecessary thing I have ever spent money on is taking my 13 year old daughter to her first concert (One Direction). It’s been our thing ever since, and she’s 19 now. We go see someone we love and all the memories and music from those nights will stay with us forever.

  55. The best unnecessary thing for me is a few physical photo albums for pictures of my family. It has completely different meaning when holding them in my hand versus seeing them on a computer screen.

  56. A tandem bicycle was one of the best unnecessary things we purchased when our kids were 10 & 12. (They are in their 30s now). Lots of riding with parent/kid & parent/parent over the years. Improved everyone’s biking skills and now we all use bikes for transportation.

  57. “What’s the best unnecessary thing you ever spent money on?”

    Just put a down payment on a trip to India in February!
    Varanasi, here I come!!!

  58. Hanging toiletry bag! Super helpful to organize everything for traveling and can hang up anywhere in the hotel bathrooms vs taking up the limited sink counter space. Easy to pack it up by zipping it up again and go.

  59. I recently bought a recliner chair- I had plenty of places to sit, but reclining adds a different element to the sitting game!

  60. Hockey tickets on the Leafs for my Dad (a lifelong fan) and I. Absolutely an unnecessary expense, but great memories.

  61. Fertility treatments to create our miracle girl 👧🏻 ❤️. For anyone struggling in this way, we hope your dreams come true 🤞🏻❤️

  62. Travelling to different parts of the world. Helping relatives a small amount of money for their education so they will have pooprrhbit to change and better their lives.

  63. Hi! The best unnecessary thing I’ve bought was a membership at the local climbing gym. I get to challenge and push myself, improve, use my muscles and get stronger, and make friends!

  64. I bought a Japanese sword 🤣.
    I don’t think I will ever use it, but it may protect my life if something happens to me.
    But I am a karate practitioner so I may not actually need a weapon.

    1. On the plus side, if someone breaks into your home and you manage to fend them off with a samurai sword, you are DEFINITELY getting on CNN.

  65. Best unnecessary purchase: Extra newborn kitten milk replacer formula to have on hand for the next baby kitten or orphaned wildlife mammal that shows up (there have been some of each over the last few years). Feels good to be prepared to help.

  66. I loved your analogy of the long response loop being like tapping your brakes and having to wait 10 min for the car to slow down.

    In terms of an unnecessary thing I once purchased, I would have to say those candid (and expensive!) photos they take of you while on an amusement park ride… what a racket. Now I just look at everyone’s face on the screen, have a chuckle (or not), and invest my savings.

  67. Our wedding. 50% chance of all marriages ending in divorce. I always suggest new couples have a small, simple wedding. Save the rest of your money on investments. Even if your marriage is a success, you would have still gained in the long run. And if your marriage survives, have a fancy shindig after 25 years of marriage. At that point, you’ve really deserved that fancy party, which is what I’ll be doing.

  68. Une chirurgie orthopédique pour réparer les genoux malades de mon petit chien. Dépense que j’ai pu faire sans regret grâce au celi prévu pour soins vétériniares imprévus. Quel bonheur de voir son niveau d’activité retrouvé et surtout ne plus le voir soufrir.

  69. The best unnecessary thing… Bought the book Quit Like A Millionaire (when I already have piles of unread books at home) and I actually picked it up among my books and read it. Ever since then I become a FI pursuer.

  70. That first trip with your wife of over 6 years to Mexico when you both have never been there before, she also just got a new collapsable bike, my multiple laser birthmark removal procedures, a mini camera for the cat to see where he goes at night, a new couch, new bose headphones on Amazon prime day because you were too ‘cheap’ to buy the highest-priced headphones 4 years ago (I still have these ‘2nd level’ bose headphones and they work just fine). A ski trip to Whistler to stay for free at your wife’s co-workers’ month-long Airbnb, the trip to PDX because your wife’s best friend is thinking about moving to the PNW, the trip to see your best friend in MN during his two days off for the week with his 2 kids because that is when it worked best, and that was all this year. Definitely grateful and lucky for all these ‘best unnecessary’ items and experiences.

  71. My best unnecessary thing I purchased years ago was a LP record player with huge speakers. It was a lot of money and the whole set has become obsolete as small better quality speakers and cds entered the market. I am dating myself with this kind of purchase. I regret having made that purchase.

  72. Jewelry for my wife– we had a custom made piece that is a meaningful memento symbolic of us and our children. She wears it every day– the joy it brings her brings joy to me.

  73. A 1993 Mazda Miata my husband bought during the pandemic. We spend weekends zipping around country lanes. So much fun!

  74. For me it was getting iLasik done – it wasn’t necessary, but the surgery went perfectly and the doctors found out I have a rare eye disease in remission that they were able to catch before I turned 30. Great news!

  75. The best unnecessary thing I spent money on is wedding rings lol they are not necessary but it’s best because we love each other 🙂

  76. Are you guys readers so broke that you can’t even afford to pay for a book ? Didn’t thought the inflation was already this bad …

  77. Best unnecessary purchase would be the family pet/s. They cost a lot but also bring a lot of joy to us!

  78. Honestly, my wife’s breast augmentation she wanted for her birthday! She is more confident and daring!

  79. Honestly, my wife’s breast augmentation she wanted for her birthday. She is more confident and daring.

  80. The best unnecessary thing that I have spent money on has to be our family of 4 road trip across Canada and return trip through the USA. We camped most of the way there and back and on the last day of our trip we splurged for a nice hotel room right beside the ocean for one night in Anacortes, Washington. To date, it is still our best family trip for all the interesting places we saw and the things we experienced.

  81. The best unnecessary thing we ever spend money on was our first sailboat. We thought we would use it a lot but ended up using it maybe two weeks out of the year for ten years!

  82. Best unnecessary purchase has to be our Tesla. Did we HAVE to have it? No. But do we enjoy the heck out of it? YES! It is our only car in the family, so it is well used & cared for (I make fun of hubby all the time for cleaning it with a “diaper” whenever he sees a spot of dirt). It also saved us from going crazy during the pandemic as we took it on many long drives to get out of the house without being exposed to many people. Hopefully we’ll have it a good long time 🙂

  83. Best unnecessary purchase? The brown leather purse I bought recently. I definitely didn’t need it but it’s so soft and I love using it. 🙂

  84. Best unnecessary purchase for me would be video games, specifically all the Monster Hunter games on the Nintendo 3DS. Got introduced to a series I like, and it was the game’s local community where I met one of my best friends, who is super kind, accepting, and supportive. Had lots of fun memories because of that game.

  85. Cost increases in weak or non-monopoly markets can be explained by rising costs of business (fuel, transport), but many markets in U.S. are dominated by monopolies or cartels that seem to be going far beyond these costs in an effort to use inflation as an excuse to price gouge: https://washingtonmonthly.com/2022/06/20/its-the-monopoly-stupid/

    A sample:

    “According to a White House report, fully half of the rise in food costs since December 2020 is attributable to monopoly pricing by the meat-packing industry. Meat-packers give the excuse that they are just passing along higher costs—but then what explains their soaring profits? Tyson’s earnings per share have increased by 71 percent over the past year.”

    I suspect yearly inflation will cool, but that the above average inflation already incurred will not be fully price corrected back to the even a high yearly average of 5% – I think 10%+ from the past few years will likely crystallize, and thus so will the impact on labor who have not seen wage increases to offset that.

  86. Best unnecessary thing is my road bike! At $10K retail or even half that, which is what I paid, it’s a shit ton of money for a bicycle. But I can easily make the argument that it has become a necessary thing. The mental and physical health benefits as my work gets busier and more stressful can’t be put into monetary terms. I ride by myself nearly every weekend and it is two or three of the best hours of the week. (I live in supply chain hell at work so the bike is keeping me sane until RE happens right around the corner!)

  87. Best unnecessary purchase? A pair of gold earrings ‘as seen on HRH the Duchess of Cambridge’. I feel like royalty when I wear them.

  88. Best unnecessary purchase: our honeymoon on an Antarctica cruise, with South Georgia being the highlight.

    We both love traveling and this was maybe the only place we would never be able to go if we had to use our own money. So we put the trip on the wedding list and all of our family and friends bought for us one excursion, one night on the ship, one part of the flight, etc.

    It was an incredible experience and we still feel so so lucky to have been able to visit that area, even after more than 10 years.

  89. Best unnecessary thing?
    Getting my PPL (Pilots license). I only fly for fun, but I’ve had so many amazing experiences that I’ve been able to share with friends and family.

  90. Best unnecessary thing? A last minute plane ticket “home” to participate in my grandma’s 50th anniversary as a choir director / retirement party. $450 & 16 hours of travel for ~36 hours at home (including sleep). Totally worth it!

  91. top unnecessary purchase = scuba hoodie…in the summer…cause the ac is running 🙂 wOrtH iT!! 🙂

  92. Best unnecessary thing: an e-bike. I still have a manual bike, but I can keep up much better with my partner when they’re on their e-toy, go farther, and see more of my neighborhood and city.

  93. The best thing I ever spent money on was a four week conservation program in San Gemini, Italy. I have always dreamed of living in Italy but always felt time/money/work commitment/family was more important than my desires. I searched for programs that aligned with my museum work, and found one in Umbria. I told myself and others that this was an educational experience and it was about advancing my career. In reality, it was about me experiencing life in a small Italian town. I did learn about the conservation of works-on-paper, but the real education came from interacting with locals in a historic town. I don’t speak Italian, so the work was in connecting with people who have a set culture that is very different from mine. Best money I ever spent…and forfeited (from not working).

  94. Best unnecessary purchase would be the annual project life album I make to document and print our photos and memories. My kids love looking through it and reliving the past year and it makes my mama heart happy!

  95. Best unnecessary purchase for me was a trip to go see my beloved Green Bay Packers win the Superbowl with my Dad. Never forget those memories!

  96. A triangular pool floaty designed to look like a pizza slice where the crust acted as a pillow to rest my head it is awesome! Loved your book and would like to continue to add knowledge. I work as a physical therapist in hospitals and it can be depressing. I’d love to read the hospice doctor’s take on life and finance

  97. I live in the US, so going to my home country, Spain, with my kids every year, is my best unnecessary purchase!

  98. I remember 1970’s when everyone thought at the beginning that things were working and everything was going back to normal was when the sh** really hit the fan and inflation skyrocketed. It only takes OPEC to do something or Russia to launch a nuke or something….that time it took FED 3 yrs to realize and raise rates close to 20% to control it after 10 yrs of if running.
    Today I don’t see FED having the guts to raise above 5% so I think the optimism is nice and everything but we’re far from done with it yet.

  99. Traveling to different countries to experience exotic people, places and weather is somehow still etched in my memories after a long while.

  100. Best unnecessary thing…if we are talking about something tangible then it has to be my yet-another-nice-scented-soap addiction! Being someone that travels a lot it is not like I have a lot of space and already own the necessary amount of soap… yet here I am, with yet another scented soap!

    Adore the blog guys, thank you for the contest and for providing super interesting content always 😊

  101. Best unnecessary spending: Round trip Global First Class seats on United Airlines for my mother and my family of 3 (husband, daughter and me) to fly to/from California to Seoul Korea. My mother had never returned to visit her family in Korea since immigrating to California in 1976. Eight years ago when my daughter was 18 months old (lap babies were charged about $800 on Global First), we took my mother to Seoul to celebrate her 75th birthday with her siblings. My mother was terrified of traveling the long distance but traveling first class made the journey memorable.

  102. The best unnecessary thing I ever bought are badminton lessons so that I could get into my university’s varsity team. Despite having zero talent in sports, being part of a sports team was my dream, and I continue to spend $ per session on badminton each week. I foresee playing badminton until I physically can’t. 🙂

    P.S. You guys are incredible!!!

  103. Currently, WhatsApp is by far the most widely used social network. And for that reason, I think everyone has the right to use this messenger for nothing at all. If you decide to try downloading, I suggest paying attention to the gb whatsapp download . Do not overpay; instead, download the application for free from the authorized agent.

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