Last week we received the December employment report, from which we learned that the US economy created more than 200,000 jobs—with most of those jobs coming from the services sector. The good news from a markets perspective was that wage inflation showed signs of moderating—falling to 4.6% from 5.1% the month prior. We’ll be tracking the release of the December Consumer Price Index (CPI) inflation data in the week ahead, which the consensus expects to come in at 6.6% (down from 7.1% in November). Generally speaking, inflation remains elevated, but it is trending in the right direction—which is increasing the likelihood of a soft landing. The debate now is how long it will take to fall closer to the Fed’s 2% target.
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