Voters were concerned about inflation when they went to the polls on Tuesday. Consumer spending, employment, and economic growth have been affected by rising prices.

Price woes

According to the preliminary results of the AP VoteCast Survey more than 93,000 registered voters said inflation was an important factor in their decision to vote.

About half of those who flagged inflation as a factor in their vote said groceries or food prices were weighing on them the most.

More than one-third of respondents said their financial situation was getting worse, and a similar number doubted they could keep up with their expenses, according to The Journal.

Why inflation has jumped

Inflation shot up to a 40-year high of 9.1% in June and stayed above 8% in September, far above the Federal Reserve's annual target.

The Fed and the Treasury provided massive fiscal stimulation to the economy while trying to keep it afloat during the global supply chain disruption caused by the COVID-19 Pandemic.

The price of wheat, gasoline, and other essential goods have gone up this year because of the Russian invasion of Ukraine. Production and global trade are being disrupted by China's ongoing COVID-19 lockdowns.

Sweeping impacts

The Fed raised interest rates from almost zero in March to a range of 3% to 4% today. Powell warned this month that the Fed could raise rates to 5% for the first time in eight years if inflation doesn't abate.

Higher rates tend to cool the economy and relieve upward pressure on prices as they encourage people to save.

Higher costs of food, fuel, and rent, as well as larger mortgage, credit-card, and car-loan payments, are squeezing Americans.

They are putting away less money and accruing more credit-card debt. They're on the verge of running out of money within months, according to experts.

Household wealth has been hammered by rate increases that have pulled down the prices of assets. Some of America's biggest employers have stopped hiring or started mass layoffs, paving the way for larger job losses that could hit people's incomes.

Consumer spending is likely to go down if household finances get worse. The US dollar has appreciated this year due to higher interest rates.

A grim outlook

Consumers are seeing their living costs, debt payments, and investment portfolios shrink in value because of soaring prices. Warren Buffet said that inflation "swindles almost everybody".

A group of economists, investors, Wall Street analysts, and business executives are sounding the alarm on a possible recession.

If the Fed cuts rates too early, it will make inflation a constant problem going forward, even if investors look to the Fed to save the day.

American voters are so worried about inflation that it's no wonder.