Play-By-Play: Our Date With Inflation
How’d our date go with inflation, you ask? We’ll let you in on the 🫖. As promised, the play-by-play:
With all the recent talk about how hot inflation would be, we were nervous going in. So nervous, this was our order…
1/ Our date came in stronger than expected. Inflation dropped to 6.4% — vs. 6.5% in December, but was higher than estimates.
- On a monthly basis, CPI increased 0.5% — the highest in three months.
- Inflation is still falling, just at a slower pace than in recent months, which is a big 🚩.
2/ What really soured the mood: Shelter costs contributed the most to inflation — making up nearly half the increase.
Other highlights include (change from previous month):
- Food prices jumped 0.4% — the smallest increase since Aug. 2021.
- Prescription drug prices rose 2.1% — the highest ever.
Like any sane person after a date, we went home and broke down the good and the bad:
3/ Markets didn’t react well. The Fed is looking for the job market to cool down, inflation to fall — but “January data threw all of that up in the air” — Neil Shearing, Capital Economics’ Chief Economist (FT).
The S&P 500 whipsawed after the news just to finish up 0.2% for the day. Hey, coulda been worse.
We were left wondering: How many more
interest rate hikes dates will there be?
Resident Hitch, Federal Reserve Bank of Richmond President Thomas Barkin said interest rates will likely have to go higher than expected to bring inflation down.