Don’s Notebook May 11, 2018
April’s inflation reports this week have been trending lower, but oil-related, and dollar- and tariff-related, pressure shows in today’s data on import prices.
- Import prices, up 0.3 percent in April, got a boost from a rise in oil but were otherwise flat, at only a 0.1 percent increase excluding petroleum.
- Export prices do show pressure, up 0.6 percent in the month despite a 1.2 percent decline in agricultural prices
The preliminary reading of University of Michigan Consumer Sentiment for May held steady at a solid 98.8 for preliminary May led by a gain in the expectations component, now at 89.5, which offset a dip in the assessment of current conditions, at 113.3.
- Year-ahead inflation expectations edged 1 tenth higher to 2.8 percent, a level last matched back in March this year but not surpassed since March 2015.
- There no hints in today’s report of a burst higher for consumer spending nor for inflation, though the results are consistent with moderate strength for both.
Watch for Q1 Earnings announcements from notables Subaru, Thomson Reuters, Nippon Telegraph and Telephone and Pilgrim’s Pride.