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Several important macroeconomic questions are puzzling economists, the Federal Reserve and everyone else. Why is inflation running so hot? What’s behind the surge in home prices? And why is it so hard for businesses to find workers?
There is no single answer, of course, and there are some credible ones. Supply shortages, robust consumer demand and the Russia-Ukraine war are undoubtedly contributing to higher prices. A slowdown in home construction coupled with renewed interest in suburbs during the pandemic resulted in housing shortages. And the pandemic motivated some workers to retire early while making it harder for others to return to work.
Yet the questions linger, suggesting other forces at play as well. There is a good chance one of them is cryptocurrencies.
It’s well accepted that the availability — or scarcity — of money affects the economy by changing businesses and consumers’ desire…