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Fed’s Jerome Powell Gets Earful From Small Businesses Complaining About High Prices

Fed’s Jerome Powell Gets Earful From Small Businesses Complaining About High Prices

Fed’s Powell Gets Earful From Small Businesses ‘Blindsided’ by High Prices

On Monday, 2nd October, the Chairman of the Federal Reserve, Jerome Powell, along with Patrick Harker (President and CEO of the US Federal Reserve), took a walking tour of the Central Market in York, Pennsylvania.

According to Sources, Powell got an earful from various owners of small businesses who were complaining about inflation, high rates of interest, and other problems that workers face. A group of business owners informed a different perspective where there are high prices, labor shortages, and more challenges ever since the end of the pandemic.

All were gathered at the Gather 256 coffee shop. The co-owner of Flinchbaugh’s Orchard & Farm in York, Julie Flinchbaugh Keene, spoke to Powell and Harker,

We’re a little blindsided […] Predictability is just gone. It’s very hard to operate a business in a world where there’s no predictability. And so that’s been a bit of a challenge.”

These are the problems that the small businesses in the area have been facing since the post-pandemic period. In response to follow-up questions from Powell, Flinchbaugh Keene said that there are various concerns related to fertilizer prices, fuel costs, and wages as well.

Apart from that, Cindy Steele, the CEO of Central Market (a business facility for small retail vendors), said –

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I think our biggest problem for vendors right now is staffing. So they can’t find staff. And if they do find staff, they don’t last, you know, a day or two.

Powell and Harker’s visit to the area was part of an effort to highlight the successes of York with economic and community development. They also wanted to learn about various obstacles that people are facing in the area, which are similar to the ones reported by the Beige Book report compiled by 12 Fed Banks.

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