When President Donald J. Trump left office, the average price for a large French fry at McDonald’s was $1.89. A double quarter pounder with cheese cost $4.79, a Big Mac $3.99, Filet O Fish $3.79.
As millions of Americans who frequent the fast-food chain today have probably recognized, their bill is much higher. A large French fry averages $3.89 – a whopping 106% increase from just a year ago. A double quarter pounder with cheese is now $6.79, a Big Mac $5.59, Filet O Fish $5.29 – all about $2 higher than 2020.
McDonald’s is not the only fast-food chain raising prices. Chipotle implemented a 4% price increase across its menu in June. Taco Bell’s food now costs consumers 10% more, the cost of donuts and coffee at Dunkin’ Donuts has spiked 8%, according to a Gordon Haskett analysis, which evaluated 24 restaurant chains over the span of a year. The analysis found quick-service restaurants made the largest price increases, averaging 6%, and most were implemented in March. Exact prices vary by market and franchise.
As much as the Biden administration would like to deny it, inflation is here, it’s real, and it’s hitting blue-collar workers the hardest.
Many of these restaurant chains blame rising labor costs in their decision to increase prices. There’s a labor shortage, as many Americans are simply making more money sitting on the sidelines receiving state and federal unemployment checks than working. Chipotle caved to Mr. Biden’s calls for employers to pay a “living wage,” increasing hourly wages to $15, and as a result, it’s charging its customers 30 to 40 cents more for an average meal.
What good are higher wages if it costs you more to buy essential goods, like food? For the first six months of Mr. Biden’s presidency, higher prices have exceeded wage growth every month, wiping out pay raises and making the money Americans earn worth less.
Higher freight and supply costs are also leading to price hikes. Last week, after missing analysts’ estimates in their second-quarter financial results, the CEO of Red Robin Gourmet Burgers admitted their menu prices would have to increase.
“We plan to increase pricing to help offset inflationary commodity and wage pressures that we are experiencing or expect to experience in the foreseeable future,” explained Paul Murphy, the company’s CEO, on a conference call. “We currently expect full-year commodity inflation in 2021 will be driven by increases in beef costs in the second half of 2021 that will more than offset decreases in year-over-year beef costs in the first half of the year.”
The Biden administration keeps telling the American public these inflationary pressures are “transitory.” Yet, Mr. Murphy didn’t sound as optimistic, painting a dismal economic portrait in the “foreseeable future.”
American workers, families, and businesses, both large and small, are paying more for just about everything, yet Mr. Biden wants to slam Americans with even more reckless taxes and spending. Instead of focusing on the mess he created in Afghanistan, Mr. Biden used his time at the White House podium on Tuesday, heralding the House of Representatives passing a massive $3.5 trillion “human infrastructure” bill.
As the cost to eat out at restaurants saw its largest monthly increase since 1981 in July, Americans are right to question Mr. Biden’s misplaced priorities. Just 22% of respondents in a CNBC poll conducted this month gave the U.S. economy positive marks and said they were optimistic about the future.
Economists forecast that if nothing changes, rising prices are “here to stay for years.” Unfortunately, Mr. Biden has given the American public no indication anything will change, as he supports paying Americans more not to work and tax and spend policies.
Bideninflation is only going to get worse.