• US inflation: Follow the core


    Headline inflation for December was, as widely expected, dragged lower by the plunge in gasoline prices seen through the fourth quarter. It fell 0.1% month-on-month in December, leaving the annual rate of US inflation at 1.9%, the lowest since August 2017. However, the core rate, which excludes the volatile food and energy components, has risen 0.2% MoM and 2.2% year-on-year, and remains above the Federal Reserves medium-term target. In terms of the big categories, energy prices fell 3.5% MoM because of those gasoline price declines, which in turn contributed to a 2% MoM drop in transportation costs, while tobacco prices ... (full story)