MetroIntelligence Economic Update by P. DUFFY
Consumer Price Index up 0.4 percent and 3.7 percent year-on=year
The Consumer Price Index for All Urban Consumers (CPI-U) rose 0.4 percent in September on a seasonally adjusted basis, after increasing 0.6 percent in August, and rose 3.7 percent year-on-year. The index for shelter was the largest contributor to the monthly all items increase, accounting for over half of the increase. An increase in the gasoline index was also a major contributor to the all items monthly rise. The index for all items less food and energy rose 0.3 percent in September, the same increase as in August, and was up 4.1 percent year-on-year.
Inflation tracker Producer Price Index up 0.5 percent in September and 2.2 percent year-on-year
The Producer Price Index for final demand increased 0.5 percent in September, after rising 0.7 percent in August and 0.6 percent in July. Final demand advanced 2.2 percent for the 12 months ended in September, the largest increase since moving up 2.3 percent for the 12 months ended in April. Prices for final demand less foods, energy, and trade services increased 0.2 percent in September, the same as in August but down from 0.3 percent in July. For the 12 months ended in September, the index for final demand less foods, energy, and trade services moved up 2.8 percent versus 2.9 percent in both August and July.
Small Business Optimism index slips half point to 90.8
The NFIB Small Business Optimism Index decreased half of a point in September to 90.8. Twenty-three percent of owners reported that inflation was their single most important problem in operating their business, unchanged from last month and tied with labor quality as the top concern. Forty-three percent (seasonally adjusted) of owners reported job openings that were hard to fill, up three points from August and remaining historically high as owners can’t hire enough workers due to few qualified applicants. Seasonally adjusted, a net 23% plan to raise compensation in the next three months, down three points from August. The net percent of owners raising average selling prices increased two points to a net 29% seasonally adjusted, still a very inflationary level.