Inflation Unexpectedly Climbs Even Higher, Throwing Federal Reserve’s Interest Rate Decision Into Question

Inflation Unexpectedly Climbs Even Higher, Throwing Federal Reserve’s Interest Rate Decision Into Question

February’s inflation rate topped expectations and has put into question the Federal Reserve’s willingness to cut interest rates.

The Consumer Price Index rose 3.2 percent in February, according to The Wall Street Journal, topping the 3.1 percent that economists had forecast.

Prices rose 0.4 percent from January.

Core prices, which exclude food and energy because those are more volatile month-to-month, rose 0.4 percent from January, topping the 0.3 percent economists predicted. Core prices are now up 3.8 percent from 2023.

The Journal wrote that an interest rate cut  “still looks to be off the table, with interest-rate futures implying that investors see next to no chance of one.”

The next meeting of the Federal Reserve is set for March 19-20, according to CBS News. While most analysts did not expect an interest rate cut this month, according to CBS, most analyst were expecting three rate cuts this year, according to the Journal.

That might be in question not, the Journal reported.

Some commentators said the report endorses concerns that January figures showing higher-than-expected inflation were not just a blip.

“Inflation remains unusually high,” Jason Furman, the former White House Council of Economic Advisers chief under President Barack Obama, wrote in a post on the social media platform X.

In an opinion piece published by Fox News, Scott Bessent CEO and chief investment officer for Key Square Capital Management, wrote that President Joe Biden cannot dodge blame for Americans’ economic suffering.

“Inflation, interest rates and immigration – the three I’s – have created a toxic economic mix for the bottom 50 percent of American wage earners during President Joe Biden’s first three years in office. The State of the Union address shows that Biden still does not understand why lower income citizens have had it with being force-fed his foul concoction,” he wrote.

“In retrospect, ‘Bidenomics”was a sad, simple and cynical economic plan: spend, spend, spend while opening up the U.S. southern border to unlimited immigration to keep wage inflation down,” Bessent wrote.

Bessent said Biden has taken the wrong tone on the economy.

“Biden has berated the American people over the past months with an economic version of ‘the beatings will continue until morale improves,’ failing to understand what he taken away from them. Inflation has taken away their purchasing power and the abundance they enjoyed before Biden assumed office,” he wrote.

“High interest rates have taken away the dream of home ownership and economic security. Unchecked immigration has taken away working-class wage growth and personal safety. The president’s current poll numbers suggest that voters want to banish the three I’s to the scrapheap of history and make the economic flogging stop,” he wrote.

This article appeared originally on The Western Journal.

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