Thursday, January 19, 2012

Key Measures of Inflation moderate in December

by Bill McBride on 1/19/2012 03:08:00 PM

Earlier today the BLS reported:

The Consumer Price Index for All Urban Consumers (CPI-U) was unchanged in December on a seasonally adjusted basis ... The index for all items less food and energy increased 0.1 percent in December after rising 0.2 percent in November.
The Cleveland Fed released the median CPI and the trimmed-mean CPI this morning:
According to the Federal Reserve Bank of Cleveland, the median Consumer Price Index rose 0.2% (2.9% annualized rate) in December. The 16% trimmed-mean Consumer Price Index increased 0.1% (1.5% annualized rate) during the month.
...
The CPI less food and energy increased 0.1% (1.8% annualized rate) on a seasonally adjusted basis.

Over the last 12 months, the median CPI rose 2.3%, the trimmed-mean CPI rose 2.5%, the CPI rose 3.0%, and the CPI less food and energy rose 2.2%.
Note: The Cleveland Fed has the median CPI details for December here.

On a monthly basis, the rate of increase is mostly below the Fed's target (Median is above, trimmed-mean and core are below).

Inflation Measures Click on graph for larger image.

This graph shows the year-over-year change for these four key measures of inflation. On a year-over-year basis, the median CPI rose 2.3%, the trimmed-mean CPI rose 2.5%, and core CPI rose 2.2%. Core PCE is for November and increased 1.7% year-over-year. On a monthly basis, the median Consumer Price Index increased 2.9% at an annualized rate, the 16% trimmed-mean Consumer Price Index increased 1.5% annualized, and core CPI increased 1.8% annualized.

These measures show inflation has moderated.