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Inflation Is Back As An Issue

Wednesday, 20 Feb 2008 | 9:32 AM ET

Futures were already down on the poor mortgage news (both purchases and refinancings were below expectations, and 30-year mortgage rates are now over 6 percent). They dropped again at 8:30 AM when core CPI came in at 0.3 percent in January, the biggest increase since June 2006.

This is not welcome news, as Tony Crescenzi points out, since what the market needs now is low rates to help the housing market and inflation worries will work against that.

Then we have the commodity problem. Good news for commodity stocks, bad news for consumers. Natural gas, for example, sitting right at two-year highs, up again today.

Add to this the news from last week that the price of imported goods from China was actually rising, and you have inflation back as an issue. All this will show up in February inflation numbers, which won't be pretty on headline basis.



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  • A CNBC reporter since 1990, Bob Pisani covers Wall Street from the floor of the New York Stock Exchange.

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