USA consumer prices in surprise January rise

USA consumer prices in surprise January rise

Still, the Fed is likely to raise rates three times in 2018, in line with the central bank's own projections, even though some USA policymakers are still anxious about weak wage inflation and overall price pressures.

Markets initially turned lower after data on Wednesday morning showed that inflation surpassed expectations for a second straight month, triggering nervousness the uptick in price pressures could force the Federal Reserve to accelerate its pace of tightening.

There are fears that inflation, which is seen as being driven by a tightening labour market and increased government spending, could force the Fed to be a bit more aggressive in raising rates this year than is now anticipated.

But signs of a pick-up in wages suggested that price growth might be slower to fall than the Bank of England hoped.

"Inflation has to be put into context", said Joseph LaVorgna, chief economist for the Americas at Natixis in NY.

Instead we saw an important, albeit slight, rise in core Consumer Price Inflation (CPI) to 1.8% in January, while overall CPI held steady at 2.1% Bond yields, Dow Futures and the dollar have reacted immediately and predictably to the data.

Retails sales fell 0.3% in January.

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The PCE price index showed a 1.7 percent increase in the 12 months ended December 31, the most recent data available. Core is expected to rise 0.2 percent, but economists don't give the measure almost the weight of the CPI. Core inflation is now running at a three-month annualized average of 2.88 percent, the highest since 2008. That was up from 0.2 percent the previous month. The market shed more than $1 trillion in market capitalization in the days of trading this month as investors, for the first time in almost a decade, believe that central banks around the world will pull back on their recession-era easy money policies and raise interest rates to ensure that rapidly growing economies don't run too hot. "The last ten years was below target inflation and now the expectations are adjusting upwards, which means the Fed is not as friendly".

The all items index rose 2.1% for the 12 months ending January, the same increase as for the 12 months ending December.

A pickup in wage growth as the labour market hits full employment is expected to contribute to higher inflation this year.

Price pressures are also seen being fanned by fiscal stimulus in the form of a $1.5 trillion tax cut package and increased government spending. "The big picture story is that inflation, which pretty much flat-lined for a while, is moving back up".

The Nigeria's statistical authority, specifically said that headline inflation moderated 24 basis points (bps) from 15.37 percent in December 2017 to a 21-month low of 15.13 percent year on year in January.

Sales of building materials and garden supplies saw their largest monthly decrease in almost two years, giving up 2.4 percent.

"Consumers can make up for lost time", said Jennifer Lee, a senior economist at BMO Capital Markets in Toronto. Gasoline prices were up 5.7% from December. Men's footwear prices increased 2.2% for the month and women's prices were up 1 percent, while boys' and girls' prices fell 2.7%. As noted, apparel explains 6/10ths of the difference between the actual and predicted core CPI number. The food index rose 0.2% with the indexes for food at home and food away from home both rising. The difference of 0.2 percentage points was enough to roil stocks for a couple of hours.

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