Stocks recovered from losses Friday morning as investors continued to weigh whether a rise in inflation measures or signs of disinflation in July’s reports were more telling for the path of interest rates.
Around 10:30 a.m. ET, the Dow Jones Industrial Average (^DJI) had turned green, rising 0.4%, while the S&P 500 (^GSPC) also flipped to gain 0.1%. The tech-heavy Nasdaq Composite (^IXIC) shed almost 0.2%, also a turnaround from the open. The gauges closed slightly higher after paring larger gains earlier in Thursday’s session.
Fresh producer price data provided more insight into the inflation story and the prospects for a rate reprieve from the Federal Reserve. Producer prices rose 0.3% in July, the government said, more than expected. But overall levels of inflation remained significantly lower than recent peaks.
While Thursday’s CPI reading showed inflation heated up again for the first time in 13 months, some see convincing signs that price pressures are easing — making it more likely the Federal Reserve won’t hike interest rates at its next meeting.
But in an interview with Yahoo Finance, San Francisco Federal Reserve Bank President Mary Daly said the Fed still has “more work to do” to cool price pressures. Those hawkish comments helped spark some doubt about the inflation data, broadly seen as positive.
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