The Effect of Energy Shocks on Core Inflation in the US and Euro Area

Phurden Lepcha
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The Effect of Energy Shocks on Core Inflation in the US and Euro Area
Numerous factors might have a substantial impact on inflation rates in the current dynamic global economy. Energy shocks are one such issue that has been the focus of in-depth study. The complex interplay between energy shocks and core inflation in the US and the Euro Area is examined in this essay. We will go into detail on the causes, effects, and policy implications of these shocks. Let's examine how energy shocks affect core inflation in these two significant economic regions.

Core inflation: An explanation

Let's first build a clear understanding of core inflation before delving into the intricacies of energy shocks. A crucial economic index known as "core inflation" tracks changes in prices while eliminating volatile goods like food and energy. It offers a longer-term, more reliable perspective on inflation trends.

The Energy Shock Dynamics

How do Energy Shocks work?

Energy shocks are abrupt, significant changes in the price of energy, such as natural gas and oil. These shocks, which can have significant effects on economies all around the world, might be brought on by geopolitical events, disruptions in the supply chain, or changes in demand.

Impact on Core Inflation in the Short Term

In response to energy shocks, the cost of petrol, electricity, and heating fuels frequently rises right away. These costs can pull total inflation rates upward as they rise. It's crucial to distinguish between core inflation, which does not include energy prices, and headline inflation, which does. Energy shocks can cause a surge in headline inflation, but underlying inflation tends to be more stable.

Effects on Core Inflation Over Time

There is a great deal of discussion among economists on the long-term effects of energy shocks on core inflation. Some claim that energy shocks can have second-round consequences, when higher energy costs spread to other economic sectors and cause core inflation to rise steadily. Others claim that the responses of central banks and the economy's capacity to adjust are key in reducing these long-term consequences.

Energy Shocks in the US

Perspective on Historical

Energy shocks have a long history in the United States. Energy costs significantly increased and inflation rates briefly rose as a result of events like the 1973 oil crisis and the Gulf War in the early 1990s. However, the American economy showed resiliency and was able to rein in core inflation. 

Policy Reactions

As the nation's central bank, the Federal Reserve is essential in responding to energy shocks. It seeks to control inflation expectations through monetary policy and make sure that spikes in short-term energy prices do not lead to persistent core inflation. In recent decades, this proactive approach has had a fair amount of success.

Impacts of Energy on the Euro Area

Unusual Obstacles

When adjusting to energy shocks, the Euro Area confronts particular difficulties. It consists of numerous nations with various economic and energy dependences. It may be more difficult to organize a response to inflationary pressures caused by the energy sector because of this diversity.

Role of European Central Bank

In the Euro Area, monetary policy is managed by the European Central Bank (ECB). The ECB works to preserve price stability, much like the Federal Reserve. In order to mitigate the possible impact of energy shocks on core inflation, it uses a combination of interest rates and unorthodox measures.


In conclusion, energy shocks have the ability to cause economic disruption in both the U.S. and the Euro Area by pushing inflation up temporarily. However, a number of variables, such as policy responses and economic flexibility, will determine the long-term consequences on core inflation. Despite the difficulties that energy shocks might cause, both regions have shown that they are capable of managing and reducing the impact on core inflation.

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