Inflation Rate Declines for 6th Straight Month

US inflation slowed to 6.5% over the past 12 months in December
By Kate Seamons,  Newser Staff
Posted Jan 12, 2023 7:50 AM CST
Inflation Rate Declines for 6th Straight Month
Signs advertise Black Friday deals at a Walmart in Secaucus, N.J., Nov. 22, 2022.   (AP Photo/Seth Wenig, File)

The Labor Department's eagerly anticipated inflation report for December is out, and it shows inflation again slowed, this time to 6.5% from a year earlier. That's down from 7.1% in November and marks the sixth straight year-over-year decrease since the figure hit a peak of 9.1% in June. It's also the smallest annual increase since October 2021, per CNBC. That said, it remains shoulders above the 2.1% average in the three years before the pandemic, reports the Wall Street Journal.

CNBC notes that the consumer price index—a measure of the cost of a broad basket of goods and services—was down 0.1% for the month as expected. It's the first monthly drop since May 2020, per the AP, which offers its overall take: The report "bolster[s] hopes that inflation's grip on the economy will continue to ease this year and possibly require less drastic action by the Federal Reserve to control it ... [and] add to growing signs that the worst inflation bout in four decades is gradually waning. Still, the Fed doesn’t expect inflation to slow enough to get close to its 2% target until well into 2024. The central bank is expected to raise its benchmark rate by at least a quarter-point when it next meets at the end of this month." Dow futures were up 0.1% on the news. (More inflation stories.)

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