Make your home page

The Fed’s favorite inflation measure cooled again in March

A man shops at a supermarket on July 27, 2022, in New York. (AP Photo/Andres Kudacki)

(CNN) — The Federal Reserve’s favorite inflation measure cooled further in March, a sign that the central bank’s massive rate-hike campaign is taking hold, according to new data released Friday by the Commerce Department.

The Personal Consumption Expenditures price index rose 4.2% for the 12 months ended in March, down from an upwardly revised 5.1% in February.

The closely watched core PCE index, where the more volatile components of food and energy are excluded, trended down as well — albeit far more moderately. The core PCE price index was up 4.6% for the year, a slight easing from the 4.7% growth rate notched in February.

On a monthly basis, the headline and core indexes grew 0.1% and 0.3%, respectively. In the month prior, both headline and core PCE indexes ticked up 0.3%.

Economists were expecting the core PCE index to rise 0.3% from the month before and 4.5% for the 12 months ended in March, according to consensus estimates on Refinitiv.

Consumer spending was flat in March, tailing off considerably from a January splurge.

Economists expected spending to decline by 0.1% on a monthly basis.

This story is developing and will be updated.