Inflation Is Coming...
Are you ready to pay 10-40% more for everything?
This month, inflation hit a 30 year high, with consumer prices up 6.2% in the US and 4.7% in Canada. Many financial experts blame Covid and supply-chain disruptions as the primary culprit for the recent increase in the cost of consumer goods. In contrast, others call bullshit and believe this is price gouging to make up for lost revenue since Covid.
Regardless, most had expected this change to be transitory in nature - not lasting longer than a few months. Fast forward seven months later: Everything from produce to energy to clothing is becoming more expensive. The price of meat is up 28% and the cost of milk has been up 26% since 2018. Inflation has been over 5% for much of the year since Covid, and people are finally noticing.
So what is inflation exactly? Inflation is a decrease in the purchasing power of money, reflected in a general increase in the prices of goods and services in an economy.
What causes inflation? There are many factors at play and I don't claim to be an expert in this category. Still, I can assure you that anytime there's a significant disruption in the economy, politics, wars, or monumental international affairs (e.g., a pandemic), the end result is typically some form of either short-term or long-term price inflation.
It's been over 30 years since we've seen things this bad, and it looks like people should buckle up for the long term.
What can you do to protect yourself against inflation? At the risk of sounding like a financial advisor (which I am not), the most straightforward answer is getting a raise or finding a way to make more money if you are self-employed.
Of course, you could also hedge your bets by aggressively paying down any consumer debt, either high interest or debt tied into a variable rate (credit cards, credit lines, mortgages, etc.).
Traditionally, gold and other precious metals were a hedge against inflation when it came to protecting your money. People would sell assets for cash, then purchase gold to lock in the value of their money at that time.
While it's not that difficult to purchase physical gold these days, another great option is Bitcoin which hit an all-time high last week. Bitcoin might actually be a better hedge against inflation than historical hedges like gold and silver in today's digital age.
Again this is not financial advice, and I'm not an expert or qualified to give it, but this is what I've done personally since 2011 after my weird cousin told me about this new money thing called Bitcoin at my wedding, but that is a story for another day…
MiamiCoin And The Future of Local
When prices begin to skyrocket, it no longer becomes feasible to purchase cheap items from overseas. Right now, with supply chain disruptions, deliveries are piling up at UPS and FedEx, with more shipping delays on the way.
During periods of inflation, economies become hyper-local. When you can't buy what you want any more, you shop locally for prices you are used to, like the good old days before Amazon.
On the plus side, local economies and small businesses tend to thrive during periods of inflation, if you live in a big city, that is. Smaller towns tend to suffer these supply chain disruptions more than larger cities.
Enter Miami with an innovative new idea from CityCoins.co.
Recently Miami issued their own local MiamiCoin cryptocurrency, which residents can buy, mine, and use to access local services and facilities. Imagine owning a piece of the city that also pays you, the owner.
Essentially the program works like this:
- You move to Miami.
- You live there.
- You work there.
- You contribute to the economy.
- You pay taxes locally.
- You can purchase a coin that you can spend on local goods and services.
- Its value will continue to grow over time!
Since its launch, MiamiCoin has yielded $21 Million in revenue. The program has been so successful that The Mayor of Miami recently decided to pay dividends to its holders, potentially setting the framework for a local universal basic income in the future and potentially eliminating city taxes altogether.
How would you like to own a piece of Miami? We're seeing a bitcoin-friendly mayor using Blockchain technology to encourage people to move live and play in his city during a time of potential recession. What a Time to be alive!