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Wednesday, July 24, 2024

May CPI, Fed Decision, and Apple’s Record High: 3 Key Highlights

The May Consumer Price Index (CPI) report, released on June 12, 2024, showed a significant slowdown in inflation, with the headline CPI remaining flat on a monthly basis and increasing by 3.3% year-over-year. This development is crucial ahead of the Federal Reserve’s interest rate decision, scheduled for the same day.

Key Points from the May CPI Report:

  1. Headline CPI: The CPI remained unchanged in May, following a 0.3% increase in April. This marks the first time since July 2022 that CPI did not register a monthly increase.
  2. Core CPI: The core CPI, which excludes volatile food and energy prices, increased by 0.2% on a monthly basis and 3.4% year-over-year. This represents a slower pace compared to April’s 0.3% growth and a fresh three-year low.
  3. Energy Prices: Energy prices declined by 0.3% in May, reflecting the recent drop in oil prices.
  4. Food Prices: Food prices rose by 0.1% in May, driven by a slight uptick in restaurant-level inflation.
  5. Shelter: The cost of shelter increased by 0.4% in May, marking the fourth consecutive month of growth.

Impact on the Federal Reserve’s Decision:

The May CPI report is likely to confirm the Federal Reserve’s expectations of a stable inflation environment, which could lead to a decision to hold interest rates steady. Fed Chair Jerome Powell has emphasized the need for sustained confidence in inflation trending toward the 2% annual rate before considering rate cuts. The latest data suggests that inflation is not yet at that level, making a rate cut less likely in the near term.

Apple’s Record High:

Apple’s stock price has reached a record high, driven by strong earnings and a resilient technology sector. This development is not directly related to the May CPI report or the Federal Reserve’s decision but reflects broader market trends and investor confidence in the tech industry.

Summary:

The May CPI report shows a slowdown in inflation, which is likely to influence the Federal Reserve’s interest rate decision. The report’s findings, combined with the resilient labor market and sticky inflation, suggest that the Fed may hold interest rates steady for the time being. Apple’s record-high stock price reflects broader market trends and investor confidence in the tech sector.

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