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March inflation increases 0.3%, in spite of interest rate hikes, bank failures

Newly released economic data suggests that inflation increased in March, as predicted by market analysts

Newly released economic data suggests that inflation increased in March, as predicted by market analysts.

The core personal consumption expenditures (PCE) price index captured a 0.3% rise in the costs of goods and services over the course of March, pushing the annual inflation rate up to 4.6%. Core PCE calculations exclude food and energy prices since both markets tend to fluctuate of their own accord. However, when added to the total, the index instead shows price increases of 0.1% over February and 4.5% year-over-year. Other relevant statistics saw no change in the pace of consumer spending, despite income improving slightly during the period.

For the month, analysts correctly predicted core PCE prices would increase by 0.3% but narrowly missed the price index’s annual inflation rate with a forecast of 4.5%. While this rate has fallen from the 7% peak seen last summer, the number is still higher than the Federal Reserve’s growth target of 2% year-over-year.

Since 2022, the Fed has aggressively introduced interest rate hikes to suppress prices but refrained from making another adjustment in March to avoid further economic destabilization in the wake of several unexpected bank failures. Although the committee has yet to respond to the latest statistics, chair Jerome Powell hinted as far back as February that rates were likely to see more increases if the current disinflationary measures failed to produce the desired effect. Many auto dealers have pointed to the country’s high levels of inflation and interest rates as the main contributors to the industry’s affordability issues.

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Colin Velez
Colin Velez
Colin Velez is a staff writer/reporter for CBT News. After obtaining his bachelor’s in Communication from Kennesaw State University in 2018, he kicked off his writing career by developing marketing and public relations material for various industries, including travel and fashion. Throughout the next four years, he developed a love for working with journalists and other content creators, and his passion eventually led him to his current position. Today, Colin writes news content and coordinates stories with auto-industry insiders and entrepreneurs throughout the U.S.

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