The consumer price index (CPI) slipped 0.1% in December, roughly in line with expectations for a flat reading. On an annualized basis, the CPI was higher by 6.5%, in line with expectations and down from 7.1% a month earlier.
The core CPI – which strips out volatile items such as food and energy – was up 0.3% in December, in line with forecasts. Annualized core CPI was up 5.7%, also in line with forecasts and down from 6% in November.
Bitcoin (BTC) slipped about $150 on the news, with traders having bid the crypto higher in the days leading up to this morning's report in hopes inflation might decline ever more. While December marks the sixth consecutive month of inflation slowing in the U.S. – the rate having peaked in June at 9.06% – it remains well above the U.S. Federal Reserve's 2% target.
Bitcoin has risen from about $16,500 to begin 2023 to a one-month high of $18,250 earlier Thursday. While part of the advance was likely due to nothing more than some investor bottom-fishing after the crypto's ugly 2022 run, at least some of the gains were thanks to optimism the Fed monetary tightening cycle could close at some point in early to mid 2023.
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