Rising Inflation in the United States Exceeds Expectations in February

Washington – The U.S. Department of Labor has released the consumer inflation data for the month of February, revealing a higher-than-expected increase.

According to the report, the cost of living for American consumers rose by 0.4% in February compared to the previous month, in line with market expectations. The Consumer Price Index (CPI) saw a monthly increase of 0.3% in January.

On an annual basis, the CPI in the United States surged by 3.2% in February, surpassing market expectations. Market predictions for annual inflation were aligned with the January figure of 3.1%.

Highlight on Housing and Gasoline Price Increases

During this period, the most significant contributor to the monthly inflation rise continued to be the increase in housing prices. The housing index recorded a monthly increase of 0.4% and an annual increase of 5.7% in February.

Gasoline price hikes also stood out during the same period. While gasoline prices increased by 3.8% in February on a monthly basis, they experienced a 3.9% decrease on an annual basis.

The surge in housing and gasoline prices contributed to over 60% of the monthly increase in the Consumer Price Index (CPI).

Core Inflation Exceeds Expectations

The Core Consumer Price Index, which excludes volatile energy and food prices, also exceeded expectations in February. It recorded a monthly increase of 0.4% and an annual increase of 3.8%. Market expectations for core inflation were a monthly increase of 0.3% and an annual increase of 3.7%.

In January, core inflation stood at 0.4% on a monthly basis and 3.9% on an annual basis.

The higher-than-anticipated inflation figures in February underscore the ongoing challenges in managing inflationary pressures within the U.S. economy. As the housing and gasoline sectors continue to exert upward pressure, policymakers are likely to face increased scrutiny in navigating these economic dynamics. The data also highlights the importance of monitoring core inflation, which remains a critical indicator for assessing the underlying trends in consumer prices.

source: / prepared by Melisa Beğiç

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