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October 2017
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November 2017

Inflation is Still in Check

Earlier this week, the BLS released the Consumer Price Index Report for this past month. The CPI grew at just 0.1 percent in October and 2.05% over the past 12 months.


The low overall inflation was accompanied by a 3.2% increase in shelter and a sharp 6.4% increase in energy prices. Together, shelter and energy amount to over 40% of the CPI basket weight that the BLS uses. The spike in energy prices is due to the 10.8 percent rise in energy commodities which is constituted by fuel oil and motor fuel. Since last October, gasoline prices have increased 10.8% and 39% since February of 2016.

The table below shows October price changes in different CPI categories.


Unemployment Rate Falls to 4.1%

According to the Employment Situation Report released by the BLS this morning, unemployment for the month of October was at 4.1%, the lowest since December 2000.


The good news was accompanied by revisions in the number of payroll employees for the past two months which means that the US has had positive job gains for every month since October 2010.

On a less positive note, 765,000 people left the labor force this month which caused the labor force participation rate to dip 0.4 percentage points to 62.7%.  We will continue to monitor this measure.