When is the Next CPI Report?
When does the next CPI report land and what inflation rate is expected?
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"When is the next CPI report?" was a question no one was asking back in the days of 2% inflation readings.
Alas, those days are long gone. Inflation hit a four-decade high in 2022, prompting the Federal Reserve to embark on its most aggressive campaign of interest rate hikes since the late Carter and early Reagan administrations.
Though inflation appears to have peaked many months ago, the fact remains that it's still far too high for the central bank's comfort. That's why the Consumer Price Index or CPI report has become pretty much the star of the economic data calendar.
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Markets desperately want the Fed to stop raising interest rates – and perhaps even envisage a time when they might cut them – but that won't happen until inflation is under control. There's also the very real fear that rising rates could cause the economy to fall into a recession.
This explains the market's obsession with the next CPI report. And the one after that, and the one after that.
For the record, the CPI report is released monthly by the Bureau of Labor Statistics, (opens in new tab) based on price data collected over the course of the month.
Per the BLS, prices for the goods and services used to calculate the CPI are collected in 75 urban areas throughout the country and from about 23,000 retail and service establishments. Data on rents are collected from about 50,000 landlords or tenants. The weight for an item is derived from reported expenditures on that item as estimated by the Consumer Expenditure Survey.
The CPI report is broken down into many subcategories, but the two main ones you'll hear most about on CPI day are headline CPI and core CPI. The headline number is the main inflation gauge. Core CPI excludes volatile food and energy prices, and is considered to be a better predictor of future inflation. The data are expressed as percent changes, and are measured both month-to-month and year-over-year.
As for the next CPI report, the March inflation figures are slated for release by the BLS on Wednesday, April 12 at 8:30 am Eastern time. The Federal Reserve Bank of Cleveland's "Nowcast" (opens in new tab) predicts headline inflation to increase by 5.2% year-over-year. That would represent a slowdown from the 6% increase in prices seen in the February CPI report. On a monthly basis, March inflation is forecast to rise 0.3%, down from a gain of 0.4% in February.
March's core CPI, which excludes volatile food and energy prices, is expected to increase 5.7% annually and 0.5% on a monthly basis.
To keep tabs on when the next CPI report lands, please see the schedule of release dates (opens in new tab), courtesy of the BLS, below.
CPI Report Release Schedule
Dan Burrows is Kiplinger's senior investing writer, having joined the august publication full time in 2016.
A long-time financial journalist, Dan is a veteran of SmartMoney, MarketWatch, CBS MoneyWatch, InvestorPlace and DailyFinance. He has written for The Wall Street Journal, Bloomberg, Consumer Reports, Senior Executive and Boston magazine, and his stories have appeared in the New York Daily News, the San Jose Mercury News and Investor's Business Daily, among other publications. As a senior writer at AOL's DailyFinance, Dan reported market news from the floor of the New York Stock Exchange and hosted a weekly video segment on equities.
Once upon a time – before his days as a financial reporter and assistant financial editor at legendary fashion trade paper Women's Wear Daily – Dan worked for Spy magazine, scribbled away at Time Inc. and contributed to Maxim magazine back when lad mags were a thing. He's also written for Esquire magazine's Dubious Achievements Awards.
In his current role at Kiplinger, Dan writes about equities, fixed income, currencies, commodities, funds, macroeconomics, demographics, real estate and more.
Dan holds a bachelor's degree from Oberlin College and a master's degree from Columbia University.
Disclosure: Dan does not trade stocks or other securities. Rather, he dollar-cost averages into cheap funds and index funds and holds them forever in tax-advantaged accounts.
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