Watson Institute for International and Public Affairs
Costs of War

Eight Things You Should Know About Defense Spending and Inflation

Some lawmakers are calling on Congress to increase defense spending even above the historically high level requested by the Biden administration, citing current high rates of inflation. But there is no reason to increase the fiscal year 2023 defense budget to account for current high prices for consumer goods and energy. 

Inflation doesn’t impact each portion of the defense budget equally because an economy-wide inflation rate does not accurately capture how prices change for defense-specific purchases.