Initial Claims In Line With Expectations At 385K, CPI Jumps, Key Food Prices Rise By Most Since July 2008

Tyler Durden's picture

Initial claims for the past week came at 385K on expectations of 388K, just slightly lower from last week's upward revised 401,000 (and imagine what it would look like if we had a 4 handle pre-revision last week: naturally the BLS can not take that risk). Continuing claims were at 3.706 MM, an 80K drop from the prior week, and 44K below expectations. Naturally the prior number was also revised higher from 3,771K to 3,786K but this near-100% revision bias is no news to anyone by now. About 60k Americans were added to EUCs and extended claims in the week ended February 26. At this point it is safe to say that nobody knows how many 99ers are rolling off on a weekly basis from the EUC/Extended claims ranks. And elsewhere the CPI confirmed yesterday's PPI data, in showing that inflation continues to rise for everyone, expect those who don't use energy and eat. CPI increased by 0.5% sequentially in February on expectations of 0.4%, and 2.1% Y/Y.  This time even the core CPI increased by more than expectations, rising by 0.2% while consensus called for a 0.1% rise. From the report: "Though the seasonally adjusted increase in the all items index was broad-based, the energy index was once again the largest contributor. The gasoline index continued to rise, and the index for household energy turned up in February with all of its components posting increases. Food indexes also continued to rise in February, with sharp increases in the indexes for fresh vegetables and meats contributing to a 0.8 percent increase in the food at home index, the largest since July 2008. The index for all items less food and energy rose in February as well. Most of its major components posted increases, including the indexes for shelter, new vehicles, medical care, and airline fares. The apparel index was one of the few to decline."

And some more on those all important, regardless what the Fed says, food and energy sectors:


The food index rose 0.6 percent in February after rising 0.5 percent in January. The food at home index, up 0.7 percent in January, rose 0.8 percent in February. Five of the six major grocery store food groups posted increases. The index for fruits and vegetables increased the most, rising 2.2 percent as the fresh vegetables index increased 6.7 percent. The index for meats, poultry, fish, and eggs advanced 1.2 percent with the index for meats up 1.9 percent. The dairy and related products index increased 0.6 percent, as did the index for other food at home. The index for nonalcoholic beverages, which rose 1.5 percent in January, advanced 0.2 percent in February. The index for cereals and bakery products, which was unchanged in February, was the only major grocery store food group not to rise. Over the past 12 months, the index for food at home has risen 2.8 percent with all six groups increasing. The index for food away from home rose 0.2 percent in February and has risen 1.6 percent over the past 12 months.


The energy index rose 3.4 percent in February and has risen 9.8 percent over the last three months. The gasoline index continued to increase, climbing 4.7 percent in February after a 3.5 percent rise in January. (Before seasonal adjustment, gasoline prices rose 2.2 percent in February.) The index for household energy, which fell 0.2 percent in January, rose 1.3 percent in February. The fuel oil index rose 5.8 percent, the index for natural gas advanced 3.4 percent, and the electricity index increased 0.4 percent. The index for gasoline has risen 19.2 percent over the last 12 months; the household energy index has increased 1.4 percent over that span, with the fuel oil and electricity indexes rising but the index for natural gas declining.

Full report.

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wirtschaftswunder's picture

If this brings QE to an end sooner then so be it.

oh_bama's picture

DID I Tell you guys be positive and BTFD yesterday?

Now open your eyes and look at the futures.. sigh..

RockyRacoon's picture

All hail the Oracle of Mad Magazine.   You are a national treasure.

cossack55's picture

Apparel didn't rise? No shit. $10 for a pair of cotton briefs. Wheres my sewing kit?

John Law Lives's picture

Those really have gotten expensive.

HelluvaEngineer's picture

...and everything from yesterday never happened.

John Law Lives's picture

Keep those printing presses cranking out fiat currency 24/7/365...

The Ben Bernank = enemy of human race

orangedrinkandchips's picture

johnny law,

It sometimes creeps in my mind that HE, Bubble Ben, is the 3rd anti-christ Nostradamus was talking about. Check it: he's jewish, sheepish, mild-manner, very very unsuspecting anti-christ, yet he has the keys to the kingdom for now. One would think: Ghadafi or Chavez as the 3rd anti-christ, with their military power etc.

But that is how perverse nature is....the person who you least suspsect brings it all down.



John Law Lives's picture

The Machine is pumping futures like hell in pre-market.  Got to erase those losses from yesterday.

Huminitarian crisis in Japan = check

Ongoing crises throughout MENA = check

Surging food and energy prices = check

Central bank money printing = trump card

What interesting times we live in.


Kina's picture

You know the system is totally ferked and corrupt when the sureal becomes the norm.

Watch the European stocks ramp up. Unbelievable.


Bernanke the whore of babylon trying to bring about the end of the world.

John Law Lives's picture

Consider this:

Humanitarian crisis in Japan.  Ongoing crises in MENA (one of the root causes was surging food prices), high unemployment in the USA (don't believe the BS from the BLS that U3 really dropped from 9.8% to 8.9% in 3 months), 44+ million Americans on Food Stamps, surging food and energy costs across the globe...

 ... and The Ben Bernank is defending QE every goddam step of the way...

The Ben Bernank = enemy of humanity

TruthInSunshine's picture

If Bernanke is look for his inflation, this is it - 2.4% on The Bernank's cherished (that which severely understates real) core inflation.

So, that's akin to probably something on the order of 8% to 10% annually on an aggregated average for the things we need to buy to live, with a solidly intact trendline.

Success! Success, Bernank!

Cdad's picture

So is it the increased inflation or the increased radiation fallout that is causing the S&P to commit complete credibility suicide this morning?

Toss Art Cashin on the burning pile with B. Stutland [who was telling you to short volatility just four days ago] and Jim Iuorio who this morning claims that "the market feels somewhat better," as Art just referenced everything that happened yesterday as rumor.  

And more than any post about inflation or radiation, what does it mean that the criminal syndicate known as Wall Street does not seem to care about how the credibility of the world's largest [and once free] market is destroyed on a daily basis?  What does it mean for what comes after all of this?

TruthInSunshine's picture

Art Cashin started drinking heavily at 5:00 this morning.

bunkermeatheadprogeny's picture

Glad I completely pulled out of equities last week of Feb.  No crystal ball, just dumb luck and a hunch.

bunkermeatheadprogeny's picture
by bunkermeatheadp...
on Tue, 02/22/2011 - 11:50


This is my last week of trading equities.

Then its time for Spring Break, Mardi Gras, and green beer.

Alcoholic Native American's picture

Rents are going up here.  You fucken chumps pay way too much just to live every month. My rent is locked in at pre gentrification and inflation levels.  Keep lying to these poor SOBs though.

spartan117's picture

Where do you live?  I'm in Southern California, where rents are dropping drastically in and around Los Angeles Metro.  I'm not referring to San Bernadino, where you can now buy a 5 bedroom McMansion for $190k.  Plenty of rental properties in desirable locales compared to this time last year.  And prices are coming down, not going up.

Popo's picture

"Let them eat iPads"

Jim B's picture

No Worries, I heard there is a food App! 


F the FED

Beatscape's picture

At what point does The Bernanck acknowledge inflation and ease up on QE? I thought he said on 60 Minutes that he will step in right away if inflation rears it's ugly head.  Oh I forgot, food and energy don't matter. 

TruthInSunshine's picture

15 minutes from the time this report was released, so any minute now.

I await.

Mercury's picture

Let them eat hedonic soup!

Caviar Emptor's picture

CNBS panel believes there's no inflation. That's good enough for me, Bernank, the market and TPTB. All together now: "There is no inflation!" 

Thanks to the magic of biflation they can play the game of plausible denial. Byron Wein said it perfectly: there's no wage inflation, there's no housing inflation so therefore there's no inflation. It's what I've been saying here for over a year. Lotsa Luck!

Beatscape's picture

Biflation is a proverbial vise-grip, squeezing the middle class hard.

Your wages are falling or at best staying flat, the value of your home is falling or at best staying flat, yet the things you must have to survive--food, energy, healthcare, education are all going up in price substantially.  How is this good for the economy?

As long as Bubble Ben keeps stoking the stock market, the perception is that everything is perfectly fine.  The Wall St. cabal sure knows how to levitate equities...

John Law Lives's picture

Here is some good (and unsolicited) advice for everyone:

Turn CNBS off and stop wasting time watching that excrement.

djsmps's picture

Avocado prices up 35% since January.

papaswamp's picture

earnings declined and total on UE increased 180,000....rally time

Larry Darrell's picture

"At this point it is safe to say that nobody knows how many 99ers are rolling off on a weekly basis from the EUC/Extended claims ranks."

I'd say we could probably determine how many people are falling off of that roll by counting the number being added to the food stamp program.

If it takes, say maybe, 4 weeks to get approved for food stamps, you could start charting the continuing UE next to the food stamps with a 4 week trail and see what kind of correlations you get.

baby_BLYTHE's picture

Dow up 110+ S&P +16 You cannot make this shit up!

Silverhog's picture

Markets up! Quick, everybody back in the radiation pool!

tiger7905's picture

QE is now a perpetual motion machine.. Jim Rickard's interview summary here,

In Ponzi We Trust's picture

I like the part in the report that said gas rose by 4.7% in February.  In my neighborhood, gas rose 8.45%!  For my household, the cost of living went up 1.79% for February, not 0.5%, only about 250% more than the government says.

If anyone is interested, I have posted my "Personal CPI" numbers at