The U.S. economy could grow by around 5% to 6% this year, buoyed by increased vaccinations and strong fiscal aid. While the economic situation is improving, recovery is still in its early stages, FED rate likely to be steady.
U.S. consumers footed notably higher prices in March with headline inflation accelerating by the fastest in more than eight years, Labor Department data out Tuesday showed. While prices for some items like gasoline have been grinding higher for months, costs for some others are showing some of the first signs of returning consumer demand in sectors like travel, leisure and entertainment.
Gasoline plunging last spring when the economy shut down in the early attempts to contain the coronavirus pandemic, gas prices have been steadily rebounding. Last month they rose 9.1%, the third-largest monthly increase since 2009, largely as a result of the surprise winter storms in Texas in February that shut down petroleum refining capacity. But the month also registered a big uptick in consumer demand for automotive fuel.
Travel-related services cost rose substantially in March, with airline tickets, for instance, rising for the first time since November, up 0.4% from February. One of the largest price increases in the travel sector was for vehicle rentals. They climbed 11.7%, the second-largest monthly increase on record.
Hotel rooms Costs for lodging away from home surged in March, led by the largest increase in hotel and motel room prices in decades. Prices for hotel and motel stays rose 4.4% from February, the most since January 1991.
Event and venue admissions price increases, people were eager not just to go places but also to do things that were largely not available for most of the last year. The 2.6% increase for admissions to everything from movies and sporting events to concerts and theme parks was the biggest since 1984.
Food price overall increases for- both at home and away from home. The rise coincided with a rebound in restaurant traffic. In mid-March, restaurants that were open were seating guests at roughly 70% of their pre-pandemic levels
Policymakers agreed last month to leave interest rates near zero and keep purchasing $120 billion a month in bonds until the economy makes “substantial further progress” toward the Fed’s goals for inflation and maximum employment.