Fed's favorite inflation gauge shows prices rose at 3.2% annual rate in November, less than expected

December 24, 2023

A gauge the Federal Reserve uses for inflation rose slightly in November and edged closer to the central bank's goal. On a six-month basis, core PCE increased 1.9%, indicating that if current trends continue the Fed essentially has reached its goal. "The slowing in core inflation opens the door for fed funds rate cuts in 2024; the timing will depend on core PCE numbers over the next few months." Though policymakers watch both measures, they are more concerned with core prices as a longer-run inflation gauge. A 2.7% slide in energy prices and a 0.1% decrease in food helped hold back inflation for the month.