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|This monumental drought has already led to sharply higher grain prices, increased gasoline costs (via the pass-through of higher ethanol costs), impeded oil and gas drilling activity in some areas (due to a lack of water), caused the shutdown of a few operating electricity plants, temporarily reduced red meat prices (but will also make them climb sharply later) as cattle are dumped in response to feed- and pasture-management concerns, and blocked and/or reduced shipping on the Mississippi River.
All this and there's also a strong chance that today's drought will negatively impact next year's Winter wheat harvest, unless a lot of rain starts falling soon.Hurricane Isaac certainly helped, but didn't go far enough. Further, there will be a definite impact to U.S. GDP, which could add to pressures (excuses?) that the Fed may use to justify additional quantitative easing (QE) measures ...