Recent Updates

  • France: **France Wages and Earnings Rebased to Q2-2017=100**
  • Flash PMIs: Japan, France, Germany, Euro Area, US (Sep)
  • Canada: CPI (Aug), Retail Trade (Jul)
  • Canada Regional: CPI by Province (Aug), Retail Trade by Province (Jul)
  • Norway: International Reserves (Aug), Government Debt (Q2); Finland: Quarterly Sector Accounts, Government Balance (Q2); Denmark: Property Price Indexes (Q2); Iceland: Wage Index (Aug)
  • Turkey: IIP & Intl Reserves (Jul); South Africa: Retail Survey (Q4); Mauritius: PPI (Jun); Lebanon: CPI (Aug)
  • more updates...

Economy in Brief

CPI Decline Largest Since 1949; Core Inflation Steady
by Tom Moeller December 15, 2005

The consumer price index (CPI-U) fell 0.6% last month, posting the largest m/m decline since a 0.8% drop in July of 1949. Sharply lower gasoline prices and tame "core" goods prices caused the figure to exceed Consensus expectations for a 0.4% fall.

Prices less food & energy rose 0.2% in November and matched Consensus expectations. Core goods prices fell 0.1%, mostly due to a large 1.6% (NSA, -15.5% y/y) decline in computer & peripheral equipment prices. New & used vehicle prices also fell by 0.3% but it was due mostly to a 0.9% drop in used vehicle prices.

Pricing of many other goods was fairly firm. A 0.7% gain in furniture & bedding offset a 0.6% decline in appliance prices. Medical care commodity prices rose 0.6% (3.3% y/y) while educational books & supplies also rose 0.6% (5.4% y/y). Apparel prices rose 0.2% (-1.2% y/y) and tobacco prices rose 0.4% (6.1% y/y).

Core services prices increased 0.4% reflecting price gains of 0.6% (4.8% y/y) for medical care and 0.6% (6.2% y/y) for school tuition & fees. Shelter prices rose 0.3% (2.5% y/y) but public transportation prices were unchanged (5.9% y/y).

Energy prices fell 8.0% due to a 16.0% decline in gasoline prices to an average $2.26 per gallon (+16.1% y/y). Gasoline prices have fallen further in December to an average $2.17 while fuel oil prices also fell last month by 4.3% (+24.1% y/y. The bugger was a 2.1% rise in piped gas & electricity prices (19.8% y/y). A surprising 0.5% m/m decline (36.2% y/y) in natural gas prices will not likely be repeated given the rise in gas prices to record heights this month. Electricity prices rose 3.8% (11.3% y/y) in November.

The chained CPI which adjusts for shifts in the mix of consumer purchases fell 0.5% and less food & energy chain prices rose 0.3%.

Trend Inflation, Firm-Specific Capital, and Sticky Prices from the Federal Reserve Bank of Richmond can be found here.

Consumer Price Index Nov Oct Y/Y 2004 2003 2002
Total  -0.6% 0.2% 3.5% 2.7% 2.3% 1.6%
 Total less Food & Energy 0.2% 0.2% 2.1% 1.8% 1.5% 2.3%
  Goods less Food & Energy -0.1% 0.0% 0.1% -0.9% -2.0% -1.1%
  Services less Energy 0.4% 0.3% 2.9% 2.8% 2.9% 3.8%
 Energy -8.0% -0.2% 18.1% 10.9% 12.2% -5.9%
 Food 0.3% 0.3% 2.2% 3.4% 2.1% 1.8%
             
Chained CPI: Total (NSA) -0.5% 0.3% 2.8% 2.3% 2.0% 1.3%
 Total less Food & Energy 0.0% 0.4% 1.7% 1.5% 1.1% 1.9%
close
large image