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30 April 2019 Three Soft Core PCE Deflator Numbers Don't Make a Trend (Publication Centre)

It's pretty easy to spin a story that the recent core PCE numbers represent a sharp and alarming turn south.

29 March 2019 Core PCE Inflation is Stable, but Risk from Higher January Airline Fares (Publication Centre)

Our base case forecast has core PCE inflation at 1.9% from November 2018 through July this year.

29 June 2018 Core PCE Inflation is Nudging Towards the Target (Publication Centre)

Our base-case forecast for the May core PCE deflator, due today, is a 0.17% increase, lifting the year-over-year rate by a tenth to 1.9%.

30 January 2018 Core PCE Inflation has Bottomed, and Will Rise Sharply in March (Publication Centre)

The 0.18% increase in the core PCE deflator in December was at the lower end of the range implied by the core CPI. It left the year-over-year rate at just 1.5%.

31 May 2019 The Rebound in the Core PCE Deflator Likely Started in April (Publication Centre)

The biggest surprise in the revisions to first quarter GDP growth, released yesterday, was in the core PCE deflator.

1 March 2018 Don't Extrapolate Januarys Core PCE Deflator (Publication Centre)

All eyes today will be on the core PCE deflator for January, following the unexpectedly large 0.3% increase in the core CPI.

8 May 2019 Financial Services have Depressed the Core PCE Expect a Rebound (Publication Centre)

A steep drop in prices for financial services in January was a key factor behind the sharp slowdown in the rate of increase of the core PCE deflator in the first quarter, relative to the core CPI.

28 June 2019 Downside Risk for the core PCE Deflator, Again, Expect H2 Rebound (Publication Centre)

The downshift in core PCE inflation this year has unnerved the Fed, along with the intensification of the trade war and slower global growth.

30 June 2017 Core PCE Inflation set to Fall Again, but it won't Sway the Fed (Publication Centre)

We have argued recently that the year-over-year rates of core CPI and core PCE inflation could cross over the next year, with core PCE rising more quickly for the first time since 2010.

20 Dec 2019 Expect a Benign November Core PCE, but Change is Coming in Q1 (Publication Centre)

Under normal circumstances, the 0.23% increase in the core CPI, reported earlier this month, would be enough to ensure a 0.2% print in today's core PCE deflator.

22 August. 2016 Financial Services are Set to Push Core PCE Inflation Higher (Publication Centre)

The rate of increase of the financial services and insurance component of the PCE deflator has slowed from a recent peak of 5.8% in May 2014 to 3.3% in June this year. This matters, because it accounts for 8.4% of the core deflator, a much bigger weight than in the core CPI.

1 November 2016 Will Core PCE Inflation hit 2% This Year? (Publication Centre)

In the absence of an unexpected surge in auto sales or a sudden burst of unseasonably cold weather, lifting spending on utilities, fourth quarter consumption is going to struggle to rise much more quickly than the 2.1% annualized third quarter increase.

12 June 2017 Can Core PCE Inflation Overtake Core CPI Inflation? (Publication Centre)

For the past six years, the PCE measure of core inflation has undershot the CPI version. The average spread between the two year-over-year rates since January 2011 has been 0.3 percentage points, and as far as we can tell most observers expect it to be little changed for the foreseeable future.

30 November 2018 Fourth Quarter Consumption is Headed for a Solid 3% Gain (Publication Centre)

Neither the strength in October consumption nor the softness of core PCE inflation, reported yesterday, are sustainable.

19 July 2019 Talk of Downside Inflation Risk will be Muted by September (Publication Centre)

The spike in the May core CPI, and its likely echo in the core PCE, won't stop the Fed easing at the end of this month.

27 Sept 2019 Core PCE Inflation is Set to Breach the Target in Q1, as Tariffs Bite (Publication Centre)

All eyes today will be on the core PCE deflator for August, which we think probably rose by a solid 0.2%.

26 Feb. 2016 Core PCE Inflation Set to Jump - Fed Target is Within Reach in 2016 (Publication Centre)

All eyes will be on the core PCE deflator data today, in the wake of the upside surprise in the January core CPI, reported last week. The numbers do not move perfectly together each month, but a 0.2% increase in the core deflator is a solid bet, with an outside chance of an outsized 0.3% jump.

30 October 2018 Airline Fares Lifted September's Core PCE Deflator Noise not Signal (Publication Centre)

The modest overshoot to consensus in September's core PCE deflator won't trouble any lists of great economic surprises, but it did serve to demonstrate that the PCE can diverge from the CPI, in both the short and medium-term.

24 Feb 2020 Virus-Induced Nerves will Persist until Non-China Cases Decline (Publication Centre)

While we were out last week, market nervousness over the Covid-19 outbreak intensified, though most key indicators of the spread of the infection continued to improve.

27 Aug 2020 The Fed's Framework Review Likely Means Data-Contingent Guidance (Publication Centre)

We're assuming that Chair Powell will offer at least some comment on the current state of the economy and the outlook in his virtual Jackson Hole speech at 09:10 Eastern time this morning, though the main focus of the presentation will be the results of the Fed's Monetary Policy Framework Review.

23 May 2019 Patience to Persist FOMC Members Content to Wait for Developments (Publication Centre)

It's hard to read the minutes of the April 30/May 1 FOMC meeting as anything other than a statement of the Fed's intent to do nothing for some time yet.

26 Nov 2019 The Export Collapse Signalled by the Late Summer ISM has been Averted (Publication Centre)

We were terrified by the plunge in the ISM manufacturing export orders index in August and September, which appeared to point to a 2008-style meltdown in trade flows.

25 Nov 2019 Deferring the December 15 Tariffs is not Alone Enough to Lift Growth (Publication Centre)

The weaker is the economy over the next few months, the more likely it is that Mr. Trump blinks and removes some--perhaps even all--the tariffs on Chinese imports.

26 September 2018 The Fed Must Keep Hiking as the Labor Market Keeps Tightening (Publication Centre)

It would be astonishing if the Fed doesn't raise rates today, and Chair Powell is not in the astonishment business; they will hike by 25bp.

26 July 2019 The Inevitable Q2 Slowdown Leaves H1 Growth at 21⁄2%, at the Trend (Publication Centre)

We're nudging down our estimate of Q2 GDP growth, due today, by 0.3 percentage points to 1.8%, in the wake of yesterday's array of data.

26 Feb 2020 The Fed's "Too Soon to Tell" Line Won't Hold if Markets Keep Falling (Publication Centre)

The spread of the Covid-19 virus remains the key issue for markets, which were deeply unhappy yesterday at reports of new cases in Austria, Spain and Switzerland, all of which appear to be connected to the cluster in northern Italy.

25 Feb 2020 The Fed will Blink if Markets have Many More Days Like Yesterday (Publication Centre)

Yesterday's stock market bloodbath stands in contrast to the U.S. economic data, most of which so far show no impact from the Covid-19 outbreak.

20 December 2018 The Dovish Hike wasn't Dovish Enough for the Stock Market (Publication Centre)

The FOMC did the minimum expected of it yesterday, raising rates by 25bp--with a 20bp increase in IOER--and dropping one of its dots for 2019.

2 May 2019 Powell Pushes Back on Low Q1 Inflation Fed Base Case Unchanged (Publication Centre)

The Fed yesterday acknowledged clearly the new economic information of recent months, namely, that first quarter GDP growth was "solid", with Chair Powell noting that it was stronger than most forecasters expected.

2 Dec 2019 Business Sentiment Likely has Hit Bottom, but Hard Data Still Softening (Publication Centre)

We're reasonably happy with the idea that business sentiment is stabilizing, albeit at a low level, but that does not mean that all the downside risk to economic growth is over.

19 Sept 2019 Caught in the Lights Bi-directional Uncertainty Constrains the Fed (Publication Centre)

The Fed headlines yesterday carried no real surprises; rates were cut by 25bp, with a promise to take further action if "appropriate to sustain the expansion".

27 Feb 2020 Non-China Covid-19 Spread is Slowing but Big Market Risks Remain (Publication Centre)

The rate of growth of Covid-19 cases outside China appears to have peaked, for now, but we can't yet have any confidence that this represents a definitive shift in the progress of the epidemic.

20 July 2018 Mortgage Lending Standards Tighten Again More to Come (Publication Centre)

The average FICO credit score for successful mortgage applicants has risen in each of the past four months.

22 July 2019 The Fed's Friday Pushback Against 50bp Makes Sense it's Too Much (Publication Centre)

With Fed officials now in pre-FOMC meeting blackout mode, this week will not bring a repeat of Friday's confusion, when the New York Fed felt obligated to issue a clarification following president William's speech on monetary policy close to the zero bound.

22 December 2017 Strong November Consumption Sets Course for 3½% Q4 Gain? (Publication Centre)

This is the final U.S. Economic Monitor of 2017, a year which has seen the economy strengthen, the labor market tighten substantially, and the Fed raise rates three times, with zero deleterious effect on growth.

20 Sept 2019 The Case for Expecting Higher Inflation Next Year is Strong (Publication Centre)

Our forecast of significantly higher core inflation over the next year has been met, it would be fair to say, with a degree of skepticism.

22 May 2019 How Much Attention is the Fed Paying to the Trimmed Mean PCE (Publication Centre)

Fed policymakers surprised no one with their May 1 statement, which acknowledged the surprisingly "solid " Q1 economic growth--at the time of the March 19-to-20 meeting, the Atlanta Fed's GDPNow model suggested Q1 growth would be just 0.6%--but stuck to its view that low inflation means the FOMC can be "patient".

29 March 2018 Net Trade Will be a Drag on Q1 GDP, but Inventories are Rocketing (Publication Centre)

If we're right with our forecast that real consumers' spending rose by just 0.1% month-to-month in February -- enough only to reverse January's decline -- then it would be reasonable to expect consumption across the first quarter as a whole to climb at a mere 1.2% annualized rate.

30 Jan 2020 Fed Policy Still "Appropriate", FOMC Watching Virus Story "Very Carefully" (Publication Centre)

Yesterday's FOMC , announcing a unanimous vote for no change in the funds rate, is almost identical to December's.

30 Aug 2019 Markets are Underestimating the Risk of Higher Core Inflation (Publication Centre)

Markets remain convinced that the U.S. faces no meaningful inflation risk for the foreseeable future.

30 April 2018 Hospital Services Inflation is now the Biggest Near-Term Threat to the Fed (Publication Centre)

We already have a pretty good idea of what happened to consumers' spending in March, following Friday's GDP release, so the single most important number in today's monthly personal income and spending report, in our view, is the hospital services component of the deflator.

3 Sep 2020 Follow the Dallas Fed Trimmed Mean PCE to see Underlying Inflation (Publication Centre)

The wild gyrations in the core inflation numbers in recent months have made it hard to keep track of the underlying story.

30 Oct 2019 The Fed will Ease Today, but will Signal a Pause Unless Growth Tanks (Publication Centre)

The stage is set for the Fed to ease by 25bp today, but to signal that further reductions in the funds rate would require a meaningful deterioration in the outlook for growth or unexpected downward pressure on inflation.

31 Jan 2020 The Wage Growth Gap Persists: No Sign Yet of a Labor Scarcity Premium (Publication Centre)

It's a myth that the 10-ye ar decline in the unemployment rate has not driven up the pace of wage growth.

6 May 2019 Payrolls Can't Sustain April's Pace, but Unemployment will Keep Falling (Publication Centre)

It would be astonishing if the May and June payroll numbers looked much like April's strong data, at least in the private sector.

5 July 2019 Payrolls Set to Rebound, but not Boom, Wage Gains Back on Track? (Publication Centre)

We expect to see a 160K increase in June payrolls today, though uncertainty over the extent of the rebound after June's modest 75K increase means that all payroll forecasts should be viewed with even more skepticism than usual.

31 July 2020 Q3 Growth Could be as High as 25%, but Payrolls won't Play Along (Publication Centre)

The only significant surprise in the terrible second quarter GDP numbers was the 2.7% increase in government spending, led by near-40% leap in the federal nondefense component.

29 Oct 2019 Consumers Still Confident, but Job Growth will Slow, Testing their Faith (Publication Centre)

We aren't convinced by the idea that consumers' confidence will be depressed as a direct result of the rollover in most of the regular surveys of business sentiment and activity.

29 May 2020 Continuing Claims are Falling, but the Downshift is Modest, so Far (Publication Centre)

We learned yesterday that the patchy but widespread reopening of the economy is triggering the first wavelet of rehiring.

28 Feb 2020 The Fed Can't Stand by as Markets Melt, Expect Easing at Any Time (Publication Centre)

The Fed will soon have to step in to try to put a firebreak in the stock market.

27 Nov 2019 The GM Strike Likely Depressed October Orders, Core Soft too? (Publication Centre)

Today's wave of data will bring new information on the industrial sector, consumers, the labor market, and housing, as well as revisions to the third quarter GDP numbers.

27 Mar 2020 Jobless Claims Crystallize the Covid Disaster, More Pain to Come (Publication Centre)

The speculation is over: 3.283 million people filed a new claim for unemployment benefits last week, nearly double the 1.7M consensus forecast, which looked much too low.

28 Jan 2020 Plummeting Boeing Orders Mean Downside Risk for Durable Goods (Publication Centre)

Core durable goods orders in recent months have been much less terrible than implied by both the ISM and Markit manufacturing surveys.

28 Oct 2019 The Trade Deficit Looks Set to Explode in Q4, it's not Just Boeing (Publication Centre)

Recent export performance has been poor, but the export orders index in the ISM manufacturing survey-- the most reliable short-term leading indicator--strongly suggests that it will be terrible in the fourth quarter.

19 June 2019 The Fed Will Commit to Ease if "Appropriate" it isn't, Yet (Publication Centre)

The Fed will leave rates unchanged today.

29 June. 2016 Second Quarter GDP Growth Could Easily Breach 3% (Publication Centre)

The Atlanta Fed's GDP Now estimate for second quarter GDP growth will be revised today, in light of the data released over the past few days. We aren't expecting a big change from the June 24 estimate, 2.6%, because most of the recent data don't capture the most volatile components of growth, including inventories and government spending. The key driver of quarterly swings in the government component is state and local construction, but at this point we have data only for April; those numbers were weak.

29 Jan 2020 Fed on Hold, Awaiting Macro or Virus Developments, IOER to Rise (Publication Centre)

The Fed will do nothing to the funds rate or its balance sheet expansion program today.

27 Jan 2020 CPI Health Insurance is Unstable, But Rapid Gains are More Likely than Not (Publication Centre)

Forecasting the health insurance component of the CPI is a mug's game, so you'll look in vain for hard projections in this note.

14 Feb 2020 Upticks in Smaller CPI Components and Rent Healthcare Pose Threats (Publication Centre)

The 0.242% increase in the January core CPI left the year-over-year rate at 2.3% for the third straight month.

11 June 2018 The Fed will Hike this Week, but Likely will Hold Back the Fourth Dot (Publication Centre)

The Fed will raise rates by 25 basis points on Wednesday, but as usual after a widely-anticipated policy decision, most of our attention will be focused on what policymakers say about their actions, and how their views on the economy have changed.

11 December 2017 200K-plus Payroll Gains Set to Continue, Wage Gains Will Rise (Publication Centre)

First things first: Payroll growth likely will be sustained at or close to November's pace.

11 June 2019 What's Happening to Small Firms' Capex and Pricing Plans (Publication Centre)

We already know that the key labor market numbers in today's May NFIB survey are strong.

12 Dec 2019 The Fed is on Course to do Nothing for the Foreseeable Future (Publication Centre)

The FOMC did mostly what was expected yesterday, though we were a bit surprised that the single rate hike previously expected for next year has been abandoned.

12 July 2019 June's Core CPI Makes it Clear that a 50bp Ease is an Unnecessary Risk (Publication Centre)

Monthly core CPI prints of 0.3% are unusual; June's was the first since January 2018, so it requires investigation.

19 December 2018 The Fed will Hike, but the Dots Could Sting a Shift to Two isn't Certain (Publication Centre)

From a bird's-eye perspective, the argument for continued steady Fed rate hikes is clear.

10 July 2019 Powell to Stick to the Party Line. Will he Mention the Trimmed Mean PCE? (Publication Centre)

We'd be surprised to see any serious shift in the tone of Fed Chair Powell's semi-annual Monetary Policy Testimony today compared to the FOMC statement and press conference just three weeks ago.

1 Nov 2019 Payrolls Set for GM Hit, but the Trend is Slowing too, with Worse to Come (Publication Centre)

We expect to see a 70K increase in October payrolls today.

1 July 2019 Trade Talks Back on, this Time, Expect a Deal, Both Sides Need One (Publication Centre)

The outcome of the Trump-Xi meeting at the G20 summit was as good as we expected.

1 Oct 2019 ISM Manufacturing Likely Rose a bit in September, but it Remains Weak (Publication Centre)

The obsession of markets and the media with the industrial sector means that today's ISM manufacturing survey will be scrutinized far more closely than is justified by its real importance.

10 December 2018 Fires, Noise and Hurricanes Hit November Payrolls, not Tariffs (Publication Centre)

The softening in payroll growth in November appears mostly to be a story about short-term noise, rather than a sign that tariffs are hurting or that the broader economy is slowing.

10 January 2018 Price-Level Targeting isn't Coming Soon, it's Likely not Coming at all (Publication Centre)

Judging from our inbox, the idea that the Fed might switch to some form of price level targeting, replacing its current 2% inflation target, is the big new idea for 2018.

12 June 2019 Are CPI Rents Accelerating, or are the Recent Big Gains Just Noise (Publication Centre)

In March, CPI rents--the weighted average of primary and owners' equivalents rents--rose by 0.35% month- to-month.

10 Sept 2020 Initial Claims are Falling, but the Bigger Picture is Still Disconcerting (Publication Centre)

We're expecting to see another dip in initial claims for regular state unemployment benefits today, to about 850K, but that's only part of the story.

18 Dec 2019 Boeing's Production Cut will Depress GDP Slightly, IP Hit Much Harder (Publication Centre)

Boeing's announcement that it will temporarily cut production of 737MAX aircraft to zero in January, from the current 42 per month pace, will depress first quarter economic growth, though not by much.

17 Sept 2020 The Fed Adopts Outcome-Based Guidance, Raising the Rate Hike Bar (Publication Centre)

The Fed yesterday formally adopted outcome-based forward guidance, setting out the conditions under which rates will rise: "The Committee... expects it will be appropriate to maintain this target range [0-to- 0.25%] until labor market conditions have reached levels consistent with the Committee's assessments of maximum employment and inflation has risen to 2 percent and is on track to moderately exceed 2 percent for some time."

18 Sept 2019 Will the Fed Forecast Meaningfully Higher Tariff-Induced Inflation (Publication Centre)

We'd be very surprised to see anything other than a 25bp rate cut from the Fed today, alongside a repeat of the key language from July, namely, that the Committee "... will act as appropriate to sustain the expansion".

19 Dec 2019 The Philly Fed Likely is Still Outperforming, Treat with Caution (Publication Centre)

The next couple of rounds of business surveys will capture firms' responses to the Phase One trade deal agreed last week, though the news came too late to make much, if any, difference to the December Philly Fed report, which will be released today.

12 Nov 2019 If Trump Chooses to Take the Deal, The Economy will Benefit Quickly (Publication Centre)

If the Phase One trade deal with China is completed, and is accompanied by a significant tariff roll-back, we'll revise up our growth forecasts, but we'll probably lower our near-term inflation forecasts, assuming that the tariff reductions are focused on consumer goods.

17 Dec 2019 Behind the Rebound in November IP, the Underlying Trend is Flat (Publication Centre)

The November industrial production numbers will be dominated by the rebound in auto production following the end of the GM strike.

16 Sept 2020 The Fed will Emphasize its Pursuit of Maximum Employment Today (Publication Centre)

It's not clear if the first FOMC meeting since the release of the Fed's new Monetary Policy Strategy will bring any real shift in policy, though we think it unlikely that policymakers will seek immediately to add weight to their forward interest rate guidance.

13 April 2018 Stock Price Hit May Hurt Consumers' Sentiment (Publication Centre)

Whatever happened to consumers' sentiment in March, the level of University of Michigan's index will be very high, relative to its long-term average.

13 May 2019 Inflation in Rents and Other Services is Rising, Further Gains Ahead (Publication Centre)

The core CPI inflation rate rose in April to 2.1% from 2.0%, thanks to unfavorable rounding, despite the below consensus 0.14% month-to-month print.

13 November 2017 Rising R-Star and Higher Inflation in 2018 Spell Trouble for Markets (Publication Centre)

As a general rule, faster productivity growth is always good news.

16 Dec 2019 The Trade Deal Should Lift Business Sentiment, but Modestly (Publication Centre)

The "Phase One" China trade deal announced late last week is a step in the right direction, but a small one. With no official text available as we reach our deadline, we're relying on media reporting, but the outline of the agreement is clear.

14 November. 2016 How Will the Fed React to Next Year's Inflationary Shock? (Publication Centre)

Markets are beginning to grasp that President-elect Trump's economic plans, if implemented in full--or anything like it--will constitute substantial inflationary shock to the U.S.

10 May 2019 Underlying Core Inflation is Stable, Despite the Weak Q1 Core PCE (Publication Centre)

On the face of it, our forecast of higher core inflation by the end of this year is seriously challenged by the recent data.

14 Sept 2020 Core Inflation will Rise Further, Core PCE to hit the Target by Year-End? (Publication Centre)

The 0.4% August core CPI print was close to our expectations, and it likely will look much the same in September and October, driven by the same forces.

29 Feb. 2016 Core PCE Inflation Will Breach the Target This Year, Two Years Early (Publication Centre)

When we argue that the Fed will have to respond to accelerating wages and core prices by raising rates faster than markets expect, a frequent retort is that the Fed has signalled a greater tolerance than in the past for inflation overshoots.

18 Mar. 2016 Medical Costs are Accelerating, but Goods Will Lift Core PCE Too (Publication Centre)

In the excitement over the FOMC meeting--all things are relative--we ran out of space to cover some of this week's other data, notably the PPI, industrial production and housing starts. They are worth a recap, given that only the Michigan sentiment report will be released today.

22 March 2018 Strong Growth, Gradual Hikes, and Only a bit of Inflation, Here's Hoping (Publication Centre)

The most striking feature of the Fed's new forecasts is the projected overshoot in core PCE inflation at end-2019 and end-2020, which fits our definition of "persistent".

19 June 2018 Rental Inflation is Set to Rise as Vacancies fall and Demand Increases (Publication Centre)

Housing rents account for some 41% of the core CPI and 18% of the core PCE, making them hugely important determinants of the core inflation rate.

17 Nov. 2015 Core Inflation Creeping Stealthily Higher - Soon, Markets Will Notice (Publication Centre)

The upturn in core CPI inflation this year has passed by almost unnoticed in the markets and media. In the year to September, the core CPI rose 1.9%, up from a low of 1.6% in January. But that's still a very low rate, and with core PCE inflation unchanged at only 1.3% over the same period, it's easy to see why investors have remained relaxed. In our view, though, things are about to change, because a combination of very adverse base effects and gradually increasing momentum in the monthly numbers, is set to lift both core inflation measures substantially over the next few months.

U.S. Datanote: U.S. Personal Income and Spending, April (Publication Centre)

In one line: Core PCE deflator back on track; Q2 consumption headed for 3%.

US Datanote: U.S. Personal Income and Spending July Advance Goods Trade August 2020 (Publication Centre)

In one line: Base effects signal 30%-plus consumption growth in Q3; core PCE deflator has further to rise.

US Datanote: U.S. Producer Prices, December and Empire State Survey, January (Publication Centre)

In one line: No overall PPI threat, but airline fares jump will lift the core PCE deflator.

US Datanote: U.S. Personal Income and Spending, February (Publication Centre)

In one line: Solid income and spending, and rising core PCE inflation before the virus. But...

US Datanote: U.S. Personal Income and Spending, December & ECI, Q4 (Publication Centre)

In one line: Consumption and core PCE inflation will both rebound in Q1.

U.S. Datanote: U.S. Personal Income and Spending, May (Publication Centre)

In one line: Consumption rocketing; core PCE deflator returning to target on a quarterly annualized basis.

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