On Friday, the Bureau of Economic Analysis released its Personal Consumption Expenditures (PCE) price index report, the Fed’s preferred measurement of inflation, which showed that inflation rose more than economists expected in January.
“From the preceding month, the PCE price index for January increased 0.6 percent,” the report said. “Prices for goods and services both increased 0.6 percent as well. Food prices increased 0.4 percent and energy prices increased 2.0 percent. Excluding food and energy, the PCE price index also increased 0.6 percent.”
“From the same month one year ago, the PCE price index for January increased 5.4 percent,” the report added. “Prices for goods increased 4.7 percent and prices for services increased 5.7 percent. Food prices increased 11.1 percent and energy prices increased 9.6 percent. Excluding food and energy, the PCE price index increased 4.7 percent from one year ago.”
Wall Street had been expecting an increase in the PCE excluding food and energy of 0.5% in January and 4.4% annually, far less than the actual respective numbers of 0.6% and 4.7%.
In response to the news, U.S. stocks fell sharply with the Dow Jones Industrial Average falling by 472 points, or 1.4%. The S&P 500 and Nasdaq Composite each fell 1.6% and 2.0%, respectively.
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