Alvin Liew, a Senior Economist at UOB Group has reviewed the latest US inflation figures and the impacts on the Fed’s rate path in the near term.
Both key measures of US inflation came in below expectations for Jul. US headline consumer price inflation was still elevated but came off from recent highs to 8.5% y/y in Jul (from 9.1% y/y in Jun), below Bloomberg estimates of 8.7%. On an m/m basis, the headline CPI was flat at 0% in Jul (versus 1.3% in Jun and 1.0% in May), below Bloomberg estimates of 0.2% m/m.
Core CPI inflation (excluding food and energy) remained elevated, holding at 5.9% y/y in Jul, unchanged from Jun, but it was below Bloomberg’s estimate for a higher 6.1% print. On a sequential basis, core inflation rose by 0.3% m/m in Jul (easing from 0.7% m/m in Jun and below Bloomberg’s estimate of 0.5%).
While US headline inflation has retreated below 9% in Jul, this is reflected mainly in decline in gasoline prices, but the cost of living is still painfully high, as shown by the persistent rise of food and shelter costs.
Subsequently, both headline and core inflation are expected to ease in 2023 to average 2.5%. The balance of risk on inflation remains on the upside.