India’s retail inflation last month hit an eight-year high of 7.79%, owing to high food prices. One can see the impact of inflation not only in India. Inflation has risen around the world, across major economies.
In the UK, inflation soared to a record level of 9%. Moreover, the annual inflation rate in France was confirmed at 4.8 percent in April, the highest since October 1985.
The inflation has already entered our kitchen, and there is no end to it. As the inflation rates keep inching up, so do our worries. What is causing this inflation? How is it impacting the household income? What can I do to be economically sound during this stage? Keep reading this article to figure out what your safety net is.
- What is Inflation?
- What is the cause of the current inflation in 2022?
- How is inflation impacting my salary?
- How to battle inflation as a working professional?
- How to stay economically sound during inflation?
- Concluding thoughts
What is inflation? – The rise in the prices of goods, commodities, and services is called inflation.
As per International Monetary Fund (IMF), Inflation is the rate of increase in prices over a given period of time. Inflation is the overall increase in prices or the increase in the cost of living in a country. But it can also be more narrowly calculated—for certain goods, such as food, or for services. Whatever the context, inflation represents how much more expensive the relevant set of goods and/or services has become over a certain period, most commonly a year.
What is the cause of the current inflation in 2022?
In a nutshell, there are three primary reasons behind the increase in inflation:
1) Pandemic: The supply chain was impacted to an alarming level during the pandemic, a matter of concern for all countries. Once a nation emerges from shutdowns, there is often a surge in demand, leading to higher prices — particularly for services such as tourism.
2) War Between Russia and Ukraine: The war between Russia and Ukraine has particularly affected energy and food, both primary sectors in which inflation is high. Due to the war, these two countries limited the export of grain, corn, and wheat.
3) Weather Conditions: Unseasonal rains in India, severe drought in Brazil after many years, two big storms in the US one after the other, and the weather pattern in the countries of Europe affected the crop. Thus, the production was reduced.
How is inflation impacting my salary?
Yes, inflation will have an impact on your salaries or an anticipated hike. As the inflation rate keeps on increasing, employees will start demanding higher wages, thus increasing the cost of companies, which means that they will increase their selling price, leading to inflation. It’s a vicious cycle. Of course, companies would try to reduce the strain on their budgets during inflation and lead to lower payments, or even worse – relieving you from your job role.
How to battle inflation as a working professional?
Invest in yourself and be the best at what you do!
So, what’s the way out?
Invest in yourself and be the best at what you do
There is no substitute for this famous tip by Warren Buffet to beat inflation. In a 2019 interview with Yahoo Finance editor-in-chief Andy Serwer, Buffett said, “By far the best investment you can make is in yourself.”
Organizations always search for the best and are ready to pay huge bucks for budding talent that can help their businesses grow and reach greater heights, even during periods of inflation. Hence, it is advisable to update your skills and knowledge to match the current and future industry trends and requirements.
Be the best at what you do, and there can never be a replacement. I have zero ideas who had written this, but by far, this is what I have personally been following throughout my professional career.
By upskilling, you can increase your productivity at work, which might not necessarily lead to an immediate financial gain but will increase your market value. If more people do this, the overall productivity will improve, and prices could fall.
How to stay economically sound during inflation?
Now that you know how to keep your job, let us dig deeper into how you can stay economically sound during this inflationary period.
1. Plan your expenses
I wish we could turn back time to the good old days when we used to write our expenses and plan the month. Thanks to the convenient evil called digital payments, we now spend money with the flick of a passcode without even thinking about it. In the age of digital payments, now money looks like just a number.
Don’t get mentally lured into the trap of spending as you wish. Instead, plan your expenses. Differentiate between needs and wants, and spend wisely. Do it for a month or two and see how it can help you in your tough times.
2. Effectively plan your investment portfolio
While most of you would be aware of Fixed Deposits (FDs) and Recurring Deposits (RDs), there are other forms of investments that can give higher interest rates and security. Haven’t you heard the saying- ‘Compounding is the 8th wonder of the world’. It indeed is, and you must look at the type of portfolios that offer compound interest on your investments.
3. Invest in inflation-demand consumer product stocks
Food and energy will always be in trend and usually see a rise when inflation strikes. So, if you have the opportunity to invest in them, you can go ahead. But, it will always be at your own risk, as the price of stocks depends on various other factors as well.
4. Deposit money in a high-yielding savings account
Although this might not be much, it will still add to your savings. Some financial institutions offer a decent rate of interest on money deposited in the savings account, being held on for a long period of time.
5. Last and final- Never panic about the situation
As long as you are calm and in your senses, nothing is ever lost. Hence, it is necessary to stay calm during such testing situations and plan your money accordingly. Panicking can only worsen the situation and lead you to taking wrong or miscalculated decisions.
Certain situations can never be avoided but can be self-prepared, and inflation is one of them. Hence if you are planning to beat the inflation and at the same time progress towards your professional goals, as we said earlier, upskilling is a must. And that is why I bring forward to you the Post Graduate Program in Management for Executives.
3 out of 5 learners are happy with the program and are witnessing effective outcomes in their professional careers. Upgrade your skills and knowledge by choosing this program designed for modern-day and future management professionals.