November 4, 2022
A company that collects and displays all of the information regarding inflation
It seems like the only thing we talk about in the US nowadays is inflation.
Everyone has theories, the Fed has everyone panicked.
And we're still using the 101-year-old Consumer Price Index to guide national conversation.
As Americans, we see only the aggregate data and are meant to use that to make decisions.
Data has never been easier to get.
This idea is for a dashboard where anyone from individual Americans, to reporters, to hedge fund managers can explore the data of inflation.
Here's how it would work. Basically, it would start by collecting all of the historical CPI data so that there's some historical information.
Then, going forward, it would scrape all of the websites where Americans pay money. Ecommerce, grocery stores, Instacart, Grubhub, Uber, Amazon, Delta, Amtrak, Zillow, etc.
Since all of this data can be collected at the granular level, it will allow for anyone to synthesize and analyze it based on their needs.
Want to see general inflation figures broken down per state? Sure! Housing trends as a heatmap across the country? No problem.
Want to see inflation in a specific goods class like groceries, broken down by county? Absolutely!
This would allow people to really dig into the numbers and get a more nuanced sense of inflation as something more than just a single percent and a vague intuition.
There would also obviously be tremendous economical incentives for collecting all of this information. You could wholesale it to investment funds, package and analyze it for news segments, lease it to research universities, sell it to government agencies, etc.