29 Jul


Shrinkflation is everywhere these days.  That’s when retailers try to disguise price inflation by shrinking the package sizes instead of hiking the price.

One of our friends mentioned that his toothpaste tube used to be 8.2 ounces.  Now it is 5.2 ounces instead.  Of course, the new smaller tube brags that it is new and improved in some way, but the product has bragged about being new and improved for most of our lives.

The half-gallon of ice cream container is now only 1 ½ quarts.  

You’ve probably noticed the price of postage going up.  Someone joked that they had to raise prices to cover the additional cost of storing your mail for the week before they actually get around to delivering it.  

In any case, a First-Class Mail Forever stamp now costs 66 cents.  That’s up from 58 cents a year ago.  That’s a hike of more than 10 percent in a year.   In fact, just three months ago, a First-Class Mail Forever stamp cost 53 cents, so it has gone up about 5 percent in just three months.

That may be a better way to judge the real inflation rate than all the carefully massaged government indexes like the CPI, the PPI, and the PCE.

Shrinkflation is so widespread there is even a sub-Reddit for shrinkflation with 78,000 members.  Here are a couple of shrinkflation photos people have posted there:

Yes, even our beloved Costco paper towels!

Businesses have other ways of trying to conceal price increases as we have noted before.  Materials may get cheaper.  Furniture that was once made of solid wood begins to be manufactured in particle board.  If the installation of a purchase was free, now it becomes an extra charge.  Did you use it to get a two-year warranty?  It may be only a year next time.

Businesses may be hiding price increases, but prices are rising because our money is being ruined by money printing.  It buys less.  We aren’t happy that businesses are trying to conceal price increases with inflation.  Maybe they think it’s all they can do to lessen the pain, but nobody is fooled by the incredible shrinking candy bar.

The problem is the monetary system.  The authorities know as well as we do that they are cheating people, stealing from them when they depreciate the dollar.  It is a dishonorable practice that reminds us once again of H.L. Mencken’s observation that every decent man is ashamed of the government he lives under.

You need to invest in gold and silver because the government continues to erode the purchasing power of the dollar and steal from you.  

And they aren’t even close to being finished!