The consumer price index rose +0.1% in May and declined YoY to 1.8%. Again the main reason was gas prices, which declined in during the month. Below is overall CPI (blue) vs. CPI less energy (red) for the past 20 years:
I have started to monitor initial jobless claims to see if there are any signs of stress.
My two thresholds are:
1. If the four week average on claims is more than 10% above its expansion low.
2. If the YoY% change in the monthly average turns higher.
Here’s this week’s update.
Initial claims last week were 222,000. The four week moving average was 217,750.
First, the four week average is only 8.1% above its recent low:
Second, the YoY% change for this week is only lower by -1.8%. For the first two weeks of June, it averages +0.5% higher: