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Withxa0inflationxa0back up, the long-predicted storm clouds in thexa0economyxa0may actually be forming

·1 min

Progress on inflation is moving in the wrong direction. The latest Consumer Price Index showed that annual inflation rose to 3.5% in March from 3.2% in February, marking the largest annual gain in half a year. This indicates that anticipated rate cuts may not occur this year. Instead, a rate hike may be necessary as interest rates are at a 23-year high. JPMorgan Chase CEO highlighted concerns about persistent inflationary pressures, and Federal Reserve officials share this worry, questioning whether rate cuts should happen this year. Inflation measured by the Personal Consumption Expenditures price index also accelerated in the latest report. Small business owners are less optimistic, with an index reflecting a potential slowdown. Higher inflation is also impacting consumers, resulting in record levels of credit card debt.