Saturday, April 19, 2014

US Inflation Edges up in March but Inflation Expectations Remain Moderate

The latest data from the Bureau of Labor Statistics shows an uptick in consumer price inflation for the month of March. Separately, estimates by the Cleveland Fed show that inflation expectations remain flat and well below the Fed’s target of 2 percent.

As the following chart shows, the all-items consumer price index rose at a seasonally adjusted annual rate of 2.43 percent last month, up from 1.21 percent in January. Food prices helped push the CPI upward, as they did in the previous month. Energy prices, which had fallen by 0.5 percent in February, decreased by just 0.1 percent in March. The core inflation rate, which removes the effect of food and energy prices, rose by 2.48 percent for the month. If we look hard, we can construe the latest inflation data to be consistent with a slight upward trend, as represented by the chart’s fourth-order polynomial trend lines, which just brush 2 percent in March. >>>Read more

Follow this link to view or download a brief slideshow with charts of the latest inflation data

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