Mixed Signals on Inflation
What to know as markets look forward.
Provided by Wendy Otterness and Anthony Bye
Are you having a tough time keeping track of inflation's mixed signals? You’re not alone.
Consumer prices in July climbed at their fastest rate since August 2008. Worse, producer prices, which can be an indicator of future price changes at the consumer level, rose at the highest rate since tracking began.1
However, in recent weeks, the stock market has shrugged off the inflation news, believing that the worst is over and rising prices will moderate in the future.
It’s important to remember that the stock market is a discounting mechanism, which means it’s always looking forward. Put another way, the stock market’s price today represents all available information about current and future events. How far forward is the stock market looking? Most would agree it’s “discounting” activity six to nine months into the future.2
Does that mean inflation will be lower in six to nine months? That’s what the stock market is suggesting. But the stock market also has a less-than-perfect record as a discounting mechanism, largely because the future is somewhat unknowable.2
Inflation is just one factor to consider when making adjustments to a portfolio. But if you’re unsure, thanks to the mixed messaging I've seen lately, please reach out. We’d welcome the chance to hear your perspective.
Investing involves risks, and investment decisions should be based on your own goals, time horizon, and risk tolerance. The return and principal value of investments will fluctuate as market conditions change. When sold, investments may be worth more or less than their original cost. The S&P 500 Composite Index is an unmanaged group of securities considered to be representative of the stock market in general. Index performance is not indicative of the past performance of a particular investment. Past performance does not guarantee future results. Individuals cannot invest directly in an index.
This material was prepared by MarketingPro, Inc., and does not necessarily represent the views of the presenting party, nor their affiliates. This information has been derived from sources believed to be accurate. Please note - investing involves risk, and past performance is no guarantee of future results. The publisher is not engaged in rendering legal, accounting or other professional services. If assistance is needed, the reader is advised to engage the services of a competent professional. This information should not be construed as investment, tax or legal advice and may not be relied on for the purpose of avoiding any Federal tax penalty. This is neither a solicitation nor recommendation to purchase or sell any investment or insurance product or service, and should not be relied upon as such. All indices are unmanaged and are not illustrative of any particular investment.
1. CNBC, August 11, 2021
2. Investopedia.com, April 28, 2021