The Price of a Good Steak Rises Dramatically

There’s been some media attention in recent days about the fact that beef prices have risen to multi-year highs — articles discussing how the price of a good steak is rising dramatically, for example.

But there is additional food inflation going on currently in a wide variety of areas — and this is the kind of inflation that affects the majority of people directly, and one which the Fed seems a bit oblivious about in their reported price inflation data.  Also affects the restaurant and packaged goods industries — some more than others.

Just for example, see the following 5 charts:  (the first 4 are from, the 5th is from and is only a projection of price increases)

Pork Prices Chart

mw Pork-prices_0

Shrimp Prices Chart

mw shrimpt-prices-1_0

Egg Prices Chart

mw Egg-prices_0

Produce Price Rise Projections

mw BN-CJ559_calipr_G_20140415104036

Beef Prices Chart

There are different factors/explanations involved in why each of these different markets are rising — drought, disease, etc.  It’s not just the above mentioned commodities, for example, the Coffee ETF (JO) is up huge this year.

JO Daily Chart

mw jo-daily-chart

As far as ETFs that directly move with these types of food-related agricultural commodities, investors and traders can look at UBS CMCI Food Total Return Index ETF (FUD), (but keep in mind that is lightly traded).  The more widely known PowerShares DB Agriculture ETF (DBA) is also up big in 2014 so far.  Ditto for iPath Grains ETF (JJG).

DBA Daily Chart

mw dba-chart

And that is not even mentioning other non-food commodities that have rallied in 2014, such as Crude Oil (USO) and Natural Gas (UNG).  Even Gold (GLD) is higher this year.

While there’s a variety of things we could write and comment about all of this — for the active investor and option trader the most relevant point is:  there’s always a bull (and bear) market somewhere.  Moby Waller co-Portfolio Manager, ETFTRADR & Rapid Options Income