Could this startling new cost justify more stimulus money?

Buyer inspecting a carton of eggs in the supermarket.

Image source: Getty Images

More stimulus money may be needed to help for one simple reason.

Key points

  • The price of a staple food has risen dramatically.
  • The government has proposed legislation before to help people pay for essentials.
  • Is it possible that more stimulus money is on the way?

Americans have been dealing with ongoing financial stress for years.

First, the COVID-19 pandemic shut down the economy and required the federal government to deposit money directly into people’s bank accounts to help pay bills. Then, as the vaccine was rolled out and pandemic-related health problems began to subside, inflation kicked in and Americans paid far more for gas and groceries.

Now, there’s another big price hike for a household staple that has everyone talking. And the big question is, could more stimulus money be justified by it?

This huge price increase is hitting household budgets.

The latest price increase facing Americans is for an item that almost everyone has to buy on a regular basis: eggs.

Even if you don’t eat eggs for breakfast, eggs are found in a plethora of items, from baked goods to dinner entrees and more. And, you’ve probably noticed, the price has risen dramatically. In fact, as of December 2022, the average cost of a dozen large Grade A eggs has reached $4.25 in US cities. This is more than double the cost of a carton of eggs compared to past year.

The most likely reason for this dramatic increase in egg costs is the death of nearly 58 million chickens and turkeys as a result of an avian influenza epidemic that was first identified in 2020.

Inflationary pressure is also contributing to high egg prices, as costs associated with producing and selling eggs, such as purchasing animal feed, have also risen.

Could this justify more stimulus money?

Rising egg prices alone are unlikely to prompt the federal government to offer more financial aid, although some lawmakers in Washington, DC have proposed stimulus bills targeting specific cost increases in the past, including proposed legislation designed to address rising gasoline prices.

However, individual cities and states could be prompted to take action by rising grocery costs, and the huge increase in egg prices is helping fuel this trend. Several states have already provided inflation relief payments, with some places specifically waiving taxes on essential everyday items.

With food accounting for a large part of many people’s monthly spending, when the price of staple foods, such as eggs, rises, this has an impact on both household budgets and the economy in general. If the cost of eggs and other foods continue to rise rather than fall, more states are likely to start taking steps to offer financial relief to consumers before these unexpected expenses cause a drop in demand that leads to a recession.

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