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What do you do when you have a PR problem and absolutely no way to avoid it? You try to get out ahead of it. That’s what White House spokesperson Jen Psaki did today, warning that inflation numbers for March, which will be released tomorrow morning, will be “extraordinarily elevated.”

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How elevated is that? We won’t know until tomorrow at 8:30 am ET but CNBC reports the expectation is that it will take us to levels not seen since 1981.

…economists expect a monthly jump of 1.1% and a year-over-year gain of 8.4%, according to Dow Jones…

“It’s going to be ugly,” said Mark Zandi, chief economist at Moody’s Analytics. “It’s a perfect storm — Russian invasion, surging oil prices, China locking down, further disruptions to supply chains, wage growth accelerating, unfilled positions. Just a kind of scrambled mess leading to painfully high inflation. We’re struggling through two massive global supply shocks. It would be hard to imagine we didn’t suffer higher inflation.”

Core inflation, excluding food and energy, is expected to rise a half percent — the same as February — with a year-over-year gain of 6.6%, up from 6.4%, according to Dow Jones.

Today, a survey by the New York Federal Reserve found consumer expectations about future inflation are already up.

Expectations for where inflation will be in one year rose to 6.6% in March, the highest since the survey was launched in 2013 and up from 6.0% in February. Household spending was seen growing 7.7% in the year ahead, also a series high. Just 23% saw their household finances improving in the year ahead, the smallest share since the survey began.

The Fed is expected to start raising interest rates more quickly in May and probably several more times this year. And the combination of inflation and aggressive action to combat it is leading to rising concern among economists about the possibility of a recession.

poll from Reuters, conducted between April 4 and 8, found that one in four economists believe the U.S. will experience a recession this year, with that number rising to 40% over the next 24 months. And economists surveyed by the Wall Street Journal this month were even more pessimistic. A whopping 28% said they are predicting the U.S. economy will fall into a recession sometime in the next 12 months, up from just 13% a year ago…

Even Wall Street veterans who have typically been more bullish are starting to sound the alarm. Ed Yardeni, the president of Yardeni Research, said he now sees a 30% chance of a recession in the U.S. this year, arguing the Fed may be forced to give the economy an “all-out recession-triggering shove” in order to fight inflation rates not seen in four decades.

Vincent Reinhart, the chief economist of the U.S. investment manager Dreyfus and Mellon, says the inverted yield curve, Federal Reserve policy, and soaring energy costs make the likelihood of the U.S. experiencing a recession this year a 50-50 proposition.

“I would say it’s probably closer to a coin toss that the economy would be moving into a recession by the end of the year,” he told Yahoo Finance on Monday.

The White House probably doesn’t want to talk about any of that. One guy whose fed up with rising crime and inflation is…Rev. Al Sharpton? Yes, really. Today on a segment of Morning Joe, he and host Joe Scarborough discussed the woke, white liberals who Sharpton said were going to lose black voters because they didn’t understand that rising crime and inflation are real problems that can’t be spun by “limousine liberals.” I’ve got this cued up to the portion about crime but by the end Rev. Al is bring up inflation on his own.

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Update: The Candyman theory of inflation.

Source: This post first appeared on HotAir

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