Stocks Edge Higher as Focus Turns to Inflation Data
Stocks edged higher on Wednesday, with the focus firmly on consumer inflation data that could sway the Federal Reserve’s next policy decision.
- The Dow Jones Industrial Average (^DJI) was relatively flat, up less than 0.1%.
- The S&P 500 (^GSPC) jumped 0.3%.
- The Nasdaq Composite (^IXIC) was 0.6% higher after retreating more than 1% during the previous session.
August’s Consumer Price Index report showed a bigger-than-expected jump in inflation last month, with headline prices rising 0.6% month to month and 3.7% on an annual basis. The uptick was driven by the recent rally in energy prices.
Importance for the Federal Reserve
The data represents the last inflation print the Fed will get before its meeting next week and is one of the most important data points policymakers will consider in deciding whether to keep interest rates higher for longer.
Impact of Energy Prices
Prices for WTI crude (CL=F) and Brent (BZ=F) oil continued to rise on Wednesday, trading near 10-month highs. This put pressure on stocks as well as potentially hampering the Fed’s efforts to cool inflation.
Arm IPO and Apple’s iPhone Launch
Investors are closely watching the blockbuster Arm IPO, with pricing expected on Wednesday and trading to start in New York on Thursday. Apple is also in focus after its launch of the iPhone 15. China flagged “security incidents” with the smartphone on Wednesday, but officials denied moving to curb the use of iPhones in government departments and state-owned companies.
EU Probe into China’s EV Subsidies
The EU has launched a probe into the subsidy China gives its EV makers to ward off a flood of cheap imports. Shares in Europe’s auto sector initially rallied but lost ground as fears of a Chinese backlash grew.
The stock market is closely monitoring consumer inflation data as it will impact the Federal Reserve’s policy decision. Rising energy prices and other factors continue to influence market performance and investor sentiment.
- Consumer Inflation Data
- Dow Jones Industrial Average
- S&P 500
- Nasdaq Composite
- Previous Session
- Jump in Inflation Last Month
- Recent Rally in Energy Prices
- Important Data Points
- Interest Rates Higher for Longer
- WTI Crude
- Brent Oil
- Trading Near 10-Month Highs
- Arm IPO
- iPhone 15 Launch
- China Flagged “Security Incidents”
- EU Probe into China’s EV Subsidies
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