Flickr/ United Nations PhotoWelp!
It still remains an open question whether the economy is hitting escape velocity, or whether the sequester and everything else are dragging it back down.
Today we get more evidence that growth is sputtering.
Initial claims jumped from 328,000 to 360,000, a number that was far worse than the 330,000 that economists were expecting.
Housing starts missed big, in part thanks to a huge drop in multi-family. The total sequential drop was 16.5%.
And then finally we got a soft CPI report, which is a double-edge sword. It’s good in that drops in food and gas prices are great for consumers, and are indeed one of the big economic tailwinds. But for a Fed that sees slack inflation as a sign of mediocre demand, it means goals aren’t being achieved. And it means any “tapering” of easing may come a bit later than expected.
The dollar is weakening on this news.