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Afternoon Note

Sword of Damocles

By Charles Payne, CEO & Principal Analyst
1/11/2023 1:12 PM

It was once a mundane economic data point that was filled with intriguing information for economists and investors, but it didn’t really move the market.  Now it casts a shadow over markets like the Sword of Damocles.  I’m talking about the Consumer Price Index, or CPI report, which will be released before trading tomorrow.

There are several components with shelter, food and transportation commodities being the largest.  Keep a special eye out for shelter tomorrow, because the CPI is using dated methodology, which makes this number a lot stronger than it actually is in real time.  

The good news is it's come down steadily since June when it reached 9.1%. The bad news is if it comes in at a consensus of 6.5% it will still be too high for Americans trying to make ends meet.  For investors, the big question is what number might get the Fed to rethink its plans for economic Armageddon.

Groupthink Consensus

I think the number will come in below consensus, and if not tomorrow, very soon.  There are so many anecdotal relationships that point to plunging CPI very soon. 


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