Sigma Signals

Week of February 19, 2024

The January 2024 PPI and CPI both came in hotter than expected, and the CPI gains were led by the 6% rise in shelter costs.  Paradoxically, the rise in interest rates engineered by the Fed to quell inflationary pressures, had the opposite effect as higher interest costs on mortgages of residential properties compelled landlords to raise rents to handle these higher interest costs.  Other price increases were more moderate and a long-term price trend on copper, a widely used metal in a host of applications, has dropped a bit of late.  This would suggest no changes to near term monetary policy. Our Signals remain unchanged.

Bob Bilkie, CFA