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Tipsheet

NBC's Stephanie Ruhle Says Cost of Inflation is Mitigated Because Americans Have More Money to Spend

AP Photo/Bebeto Matthews

NBC business correspondent Stephanie Ruhle dismissed concerns over rising inflation in the U.S., arguing Sunday that Americans are better off financially because people saved more during the coronavirus pandemic.

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After acknowledging data released last week by the Labor Department showing that inflation, rising 6.2 percent in the last year, reached a 31-year high, Ruhle claimed that people do not have a more difficult time paying for groceries, gasoline and other necessities than in years past.

"While nobody likes to pay more, on average, we have the money to do so. Household savings hit a record high over the pandemic. We didn't really have anywhere to go out and spend. And as we said a moment ago, we're expecting retail sales this holiday season to break records," Ruhle told host Willie Geist on NBC’s "Sunday Today."

"For those who own their homes and the value of our homes are up," she continued. "And while the stock market isn't the economy, you have over half of American households with some investment in the markets and the markets have hit record highs."

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Her comments come despite fuel costs rising 59 percent over the last year, and the collective price of meat, poultry, fish and eggs increasing by 12 percent since this time in 2020, according to the Labor Department's data.

Ruhle also suggested that "we need to put all of this in perspective," adding that nobody had a vaccine this time last year. 

"Now, 200 million Americans [are vaccinated] and we're seeing this push of demand and that's pushing up pricing," she said, appearing to imply that people were less likely to leave their homes and purchase goods prior to a COVID vaccine.

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