This Day On The Street
Continue to site right-arrow
ADVERTISEMENT
This account is pending registration confirmation. Please click on the link within the confirmation email previously sent you to complete registration.
Need a new registration confirmation email? Click here
Cramer's Action Alerts PLUS - See his portfolio and get alerts BEFORE every trade. Learn more NOW!

Ahead Of The Bell: Consumer Prices

WASHINGTON (AP) â¿¿ Consumer prices probably rose in January for the first time in four months because of rising gas costs. But economists are downplaying the anticipated bump because inflation has been tame otherwise.

Economists forecast that the consumer price index increased 0.3 percent in January, according to a survey by FactSet. That would follow flat readings for the two previous months and a drop of 0.1 percent in October.

Excluding volatile food and gas costs, so-called "core" prices are expected to have risen 0.2 percent, up from December's 0.1 percent increase.

The Labor Department will issue its report at 8:30 a.m. Eastern time Friday.

Low inflation, combined with recent modest increases in income, gives consumers more buying power and should add to economic growth. A sharp jump in gas and food prices early last year left Americans with less money to spend on other items, dragging on the economy.

Modest price increases also give the Federal Reserve more room to keep interest rates low, as part of its efforts to accelerate growth. It recently said it plans to keep the short-term rate it controls near zero at least until late 2014.

If inflation were to rise rapidly, the Fed would come under pressure to increase rates.

A small amount of inflation can be good for the economy. It encourages businesses and consumers to spend and invest money sooner rather than later, before inflation erodes its value.

Consumer prices rose 3 percent in December, compared to a year earlier, down from a 3.4 percent pace in the previous month. That's also below the recent peak in September, when prices were 3.9 percent higher than a year earlier.

Many economists say inflation has likely peaked and they expect it to slowly decline this year. The prices of many farm commodities, such as corn and wheat, have declined. That's slowed the growth in the cost of food on grocery store shelves.

1 of 2

Check Out Our Best Services for Investors

Action Alerts PLUS

Portfolio Manager Jim Cramer and Director of Research Jack Mohr reveal their investment tactics while giving advanced notice before every trade.

Product Features:
  • $2.5+ million portfolio
  • Large-cap and dividend focus
  • Intraday trade alerts from Cramer
Quant Ratings

Access the tool that DOMINATES the Russell 2000 and the S&P 500.

Product Features:
  • Buy, hold, or sell recommendations for over 4,300 stocks
  • Unlimited research reports on your favorite stocks
  • A custom stock screener
Stocks Under $10

David Peltier uncovers low dollar stocks with serious upside potential that are flying under Wall Street's radar.

Product Features:
  • Model portfolio
  • Stocks trading below $10
  • Intraday trade alerts
14-Days Free
Try it NOW
Only $9.95
Try it NOW
14-Days Free
Try it NOW

Check Out Our Best Services for Investors

Dividend Stock Advisor

David Peltier identifies the best of breed dividend stocks that will pay a reliable AND significant income stream.

Product Features:
  • Diversified model portfolio of dividend stocks
  • Updates with exact steps to take - BUY, HOLD, SELL
Trifecta Stocks

Every recommendation goes through 3 layers of intense scrutiny—quantitative, fundamental and technical analysis—to maximize profit potential and minimize risk.

Product Features:
  • Model Portfolio
  • Intra Day Trade alerts
  • Access to Quant Ratings
Options Profits

Our options trading pros provide over 100 monthly option trading ideas and strategies to help you become a well-seasoned trader.

Product Features:
  • Actionable options commentary and news
  • Real-time trading community
Try it NOW
Try it NOW
Try it NOW
To begin commenting right away, you can log in below using your Disqus, Facebook, Twitter, OpenID or Yahoo login credentials. Alternatively, you can post a comment as a "guest" just by entering an email address. Your use of the commenting tool is subject to multiple terms of service/use and privacy policies - see here for more details.
Submit an article to us!
SYM TRADE IT LAST %CHG

Markets

DOW 18,132.70 -81.72 -0.45%
S&P 500 2,104.50 -6.24 -0.30%
NASDAQ 4,963.5270 -24.3630 -0.49%

Partners Compare Online Brokers

Free Reports

Free Newsletters from TheStreet

My Subscriptions:

After the Bell

Before the Bell

Booyah! Newsletter

Midday Bell

TheStreet Top 10 Stories

Winners & Losers

Register for Newsletters
Top Rated Stocks Top Rated Funds Top Rated ETFs