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Consumer Inflation, Retail Sales Soft In June, Industry Solid

16 July, 2017, 01:26 | Author: Samuel Sharp
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USA treasury yields dropped Friday after US inflation rates slowed again and retail sales weakened unexpectedly, adding to doubts that the Federal Reserve will raise interest rates again this year.

Year-on-year means the month's data is compared to the same month in the previous year - e.g prices in January 2017 are compared to prices in January 2016, and the difference is the result.

Headline inflation is also showing in decline after a steep rally, as shown in the 5-year historical chart for headline inflation - which includes energy and food inflation - below. Ex-auto sales were expected to rise by 0.2%. Economists had expected the consumer-price index to rise 0.2% in June.

The measure of wireless phone costs fell 0.8 percent in June and is down 13.2 percent in the past year.

The energy index decreased 1.6% in June, led by the fuel oil index falling 3.7%.

Additionally, the Commerce Department is scheduled to release its report on business inventories in the month of May. The British pound rose sharply against the greenback on Friday, climbing more than 1 percent after data further undermined expectations for more hikes in USA interest rates.

Investors zeroed in Federal Reserve Chair Janet Yellen telling lawmakers this week that interest rates would likely peak at a low level as the central bank continues to tighten monetary policy.

Most economists previously had expected the United States central bank to raise rates at its September meeting, but the odds of that fell when the disappointing data were published.

Dallas Fed President Robert Kaplan also adopted a cautious stance on recent slowdown in U.S inflation and called for a gradual removal of policy accommodation in future.

But Chris Low of FTN financial said the transitory weak inflation was starting to overstay its welcome.

While the yen, which has struggled in recent months, was performing well against the greenback, Erlam said there was "little reason to believe this is anything more than a correction". While the greenback held steady against the euro and the franc, it fell against the pound.

The US currency dropped 0.4 per cent to 113.46 yen, slipping from a four-month high of 114.495 yen touched on Tuesday. The greenback is likely to locate support around the 0.94 region.

MSCI's broadest index of Asia-Pacific shares outside Japan ticked up 0.3 per cent. Japan's yen-sensitive Nikkei slid 0.4 per cent on the yen's gains but MSCI's dollar-denominated Japan index gained 0.5 per cent.

The US dollar added 0.08 percent to 1.3746 against the Singapore dollar while the Malaysian ringgit was up 0.01 percent to 4.2908. Exports grew 2.1% from April and imports by 1.6%.

The US dollar index against a basket of major currencies lost 0.08 percent to 95.69 and is set to end the week 0.25 percent lower.