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Low US Inflation a Concern for the Fed

U.S. Inflation expectations tumbled last month, with one key Measure hitting its lowest level since early 2016, according to a Federal Reserve Bank of New York survey that could amplify the central bank’s concern over a broad slump in prices.

The survey of consumer expectations, an increasingly valuable gauge for the Fed, showed on Monday that median three-year-ahead inflation expectations fell to 2.47 percent last month, from 2.91 percent in April. That brought the measure to a 16-month low after it had hovered near a record high the last six months.

The one-year measure slid to 2.59 percent in May, from 2.79 percent in April, hitting a six month low. The New York Fed added that “inflation uncertainty” among respondents remained at a low water mark since the survey began in mid-2013.



The sharp decline, driven by younger respondents, is the latest hint that a soft patch in U.S. inflation could expand and slow the Fed’s plan to raise interest rates at a pace of about three times per year.

Fed policymakers are expected to hike rates a notch this week, their third tightening in six months, though price concerns have already cooled market expectations for further hikes. They have so far struck a balanced tone as the Consumer Price Index has disappointed in two straight months, and as the Fed’s preferred measure slipped further below target.

In a recent speech, Fed Governor Lael Brainard painted a “mixed” picture of inflation indicators and noted the New York Fed’s three-year measure was at “its highest level in more than a year” in April.

via U.S. inflation expectations tumbled last month, with one key measure hitting its lowest level since early 2016, according to a Federal Reserve Bank of New York survey that could amplify the central bank’s concern over a broad slump in prices.

The survey of consumer expectations, an increasingly valuable gauge for the Fed, showed on Monday that median three-year-ahead inflation expectations fell to 2.47 percent last month, from 2.91 percent in April. That brought the measure to a 16-month low after it had hovered near a record high the last six months.

The one-year measure slid to 2.59 percent in May, from 2.79 percent in April, hitting a six month low. The New York Fed added that “inflation uncertainty” among respondents remained at a low water mark since the survey began in mid-2013.

The sharp decline, driven by younger respondents, is the latest hint that a soft patch in U.S. inflation could expand and slow the Fed’s plan to raise interest rates at a pace of about three times per year.

Fed policymakers are expected to hike rates a notch this week, their third tightening in six months, though price concerns have already cooled market expectations for further hikes. They have so far struck a balanced tone as the Consumer Price Index has disappointed in two straight months, and as the Fed’s preferred measure slipped further below target.

In a recent speech, Fed Governor Lael Brainard painted a “mixed” picture of inflation indicators and noted the New York Fed’s three-year measure was at “its highest level in more than a year” in April.

via Reuters



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Low US Inflation a Concern for the Fed

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