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Alan Reynolds: Reported CPI Inflation Is Mostly Rent

Year‐​to‐​year percentage changes in the CPI will always be called "stubborn" in the headlines simply because each new month is averaged together with eleven previous months.

Even on a year‐​to‐​year basis, however, CPI inflation has been falling for All Items Less Shelter (Rent), as I noted in a previous blog.

The year‐​to‐​year change in goods inflation ("commodities") is also down nicely, even aside from energy (41.5% Jun vs. 17.5% Oct).

Food inflation still looks painfully high on a year‐​to‐​year basis but has slowed every month since May. Among big items (32% of the CPI) only Rent is rising.

And that is from old leases in an outdated 6‑mo. survey.

Yet Fed Chairman Jerome Powell recently closed his Press Conference by saying, "we haven't seen inflation coming down… We would have expected goods inflation to come down by now, long since by now. And it really hasn't although it's, actually it has come down but … not to the extent that we had hoped. At the same time, now you services inflation, core services inflation [mainly rent] moving up and I just think that … means that we have to be more restrictive."

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Posted: November 10, 2022 Thursday 12:11 PM