Input Stories

Input Stories

Consumer Price Increases Slow

Prices paid by U.S. consumers rose less than expected in April, suggesting that inflation continued to decline at the start of the second quarter (Reuters, subscription).

What’s going on: “The consumer price index rose 0.3% last month after advancing 0.4% in March and February, the Labor Department’s Bureau of Labor Statistics said on Wednesday. … In the 12 months through April, the CPI increased 3.4% after climbing 3.5% in March.”

  • Economists had forecast the CPI rising 0.4% on the month and 3.4% on the year.
  • The annual rise in consumer prices has fallen from a peak of 9.1% in June 2022.
  • Excluding often-volatile food and energy costs, the CPI increased 0.3% in April after rising 0.4% for three straight months.

Why it’s important: Economists “expect inflation pressures to ebb this quarter and prices to gradually move toward the [Federal Reserve’s] 2% target as the labor market is cooling.”

  • Today’s CPI reading was welcome news after the release yesterday of higher-than-anticipated producer prices in April.

What’s next: Economists expect inflation to cool this quarter and prices to move closer to the Fed’s 2% target.

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