Long-lasting effects of inflation felt at home and abroad


Parsa Hassanpour

Gas prices have spiked as a result of the Russia-Ukraine conflict, with local gas stations charging over five dollars per gallon.

Zenil Koovejee and Parsa Hassanpour

After months of battling with excessive prices, people around the United States have felt the toll of inflation and its ramifications in every aspect of their daily lives. 

“Essentially, inflation is caused if there is a shortage of something that is essential. Look at this example: if you went to a Dollar Tree a year ago, you could buy anything for a dollar. Today, that same thing is a dollar and twenty-five cents. That’s a twenty-five percent increase,” said Benson.

The annual inflation rate in the US, being 9.1% as of June of 2022, has been attributed to several independent factors, many being byproducts of the COVID-19 pandemic. Particularly, the increasing demand for residential real estate and the uptick in supply chain shortages has aided in the inflationary state of the global market seen in the last few months. 

“Inflation has hit us hard. We have seen a shortage of everyday things we need to run the business – clothing hangers, racks, and all the way to workers,” said Savings Cleaners Business Owner Kirtida Nannoo

Due to the Russia-Ukraine conflict, Russia, being one of the largest oil-exporters on the planet, has caused a significant decrease in global access to oil, indirectly toying with the already fragile world economy. This inaccess has particularly affected the countries of Europe, most of which are heavily dependent on Russian oil for energy and power utilities. 

“I think the Ukraine war has caused shortages in both gas and food, increasing prices both globally and locally,” said Akarsh Singh (‘25).

On the more local level, inflation has been the cause behind various price hikes, especially in the grocery, service, and clothing sector. Many local Pleasanton businesses have taken steps to address inflation by raising the price of goods and services to ensure profitability. 

“We had to increase our prices to combat inflation. It was getting to the point where we needed to do so to keep up with prices around town,” said Nannoo. 

Economic commentators have also referenced how many businesses have reverted to the implementation of trade secrets to sway the public eye away from the idea of inflation. 

“Prices may not change, but the contents of an item, for example a twelve ounce bottle of water for one dollar, may become an eleven ounce bottle of water for one dollar. Psychologically, you’re still getting a bottle of water for one dollar, so you don’t realize it, but you’re actually getting less of the product itself,” said Benson.

Inflation may seem like a constant, unsolvable, and continuous headache for Americans around the country, but there is hope to counteract its negative effects whether it be via reform, legislation, or the waiting game. 

“There’s all sorts of theories on how to solve [inflation]. Some people think we can solve it by putting more money in the economy, [essentially] creating more demand and allowing people to spend more. While others think we have to wait for this cycle to fix itself,” said Benson.