Inflation slowed slightly in April, to 8.3% in one year

Inflation slowed slightly in the US in April, giving hope that the worst is over, but it eased only a little, as the rise in prices remains strong and affects the purchasing power of Americans as well as the popularity of Joe Biden. The slowdown is already weak: In April, on an annual basis, inflation came in at 8.3%, more than expected, versus 8.5% in March, according to the Consumer Price Index (CPI) released Wednesday by the Labor Department. The price hike remains close to a 40-year high hit last month. Food prices alone experienced their strongest one-year rise since April 1981 (+9.4%).

These numbers boosted volatility in the New York Stock Exchange, which oscillated between red and green at the start of the session. But the good news is that this slowdown is the first in eight months. It could signal the beginning of a slow decline in inflation after it peaked in March when price inflation was at its highest level since December 1981.”Inflation may have peaked, but the slowdown to the end of the year won’t be quick at allHowever, Gregory Dako, chief economist at EY-Parthenon warns.

unacceptable level»

Joe Biden, since the beginning of the week, has been trying to convince Americans that the White House is doing everything in its power to fight this high inflation, which is squeezing his popularity as the midterm elections approach. “While it is comforting to see annual inflation decline in April, the fact remains that inflation is at an unacceptable level. As I said yesterday, inflation is a challenge for families across the country and lowering it is my top economic priority.,” he commented in a press release.

The chief should speak at 2:15 p.m. what he calls “(Vladimir) Putin’s price hikeFrom a farm near Chicago (Northern USA). He will unveil a series of measures to try to calm the rise in food prices a little. The Republican opposition does not fail to remember that prices began to rise before the war in Ukraine.

In just one month, the slowdown in inflation was more pronounced than over a year ago, as it fell to 0.3%, down from 1.2% in March compared to February. The main reason: the drop in gasoline prices, which rose in March due to the war in Ukraine, by 6.1%. As for used car prices, which contributed significantly to the rise in inflation due to the shortage of semiconductors, they fell again in April (-0.4%) for the third month in a row.

The danger continues»

Although the April numbers indicate that a peak has been reached“The last record price of gasoline at the pump.”It appears that the danger is still presentPetrol prices at the pump hit new highs in quick succession this week, at $4.40 a gallon (3.78 liters) on Wednesday. A significant rise since 2000, when the American Automobile Association began ( AAA) these stats.” And.”China’s Covid-related lockdowns and the ongoing Russo-Ukrainian war have put additional pressure on already strained supply chainsThe economist notes again.

Excluding energy and food prices, the so-called core inflation accelerated in one month, to 0.6%, versus 0.3% in March. But it slowed in one year to 6.2% versus 6.5%. Also on the front, the US central bank, the Federal Reserve, has begun raising key interest rates to slow consumption and investment.

Several of its officials said Tuesday that they favor a rapid rate hike in the coming months. Even if it has little effect, temporarily, on the labor market, and raises the unemployment rate. CPI inflation is one of the two measures used in the United States, and the benchmark by which pensions in particular are indexed. The other metric, preferred by the Fed, the personal consumption expenditures index, will be published on May 27.

see also – United States: To counter inflation, Joe Biden plans to raise tariffs on Chinese products

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