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Economics

Inflation & Price Pressures Report: Consumers Are Increasingly Surprised by Prices Amid Stagnating Inflation

Report summary

Inflation relief continues to stagnate with annual price growth hovering above 3%, higher than the Federal Reserve’s 2% target. Once again, the main drivers for sticky inflation are services and housing, but energy prices are also exerting upward pressure with gas prices climbing through 2024. While easing supply pressures continue to be a helper for inflation, strong demand, particularly for higher earners, remains a hindrance to bringing inflation down to target.

Key Takeaways

  • Consumers reported higher price surprise for most categories in April as inflation remains sticky.
  • Housing and other services have propped up topline inflation in March, with high-income earners in recent months driving heightened demand for services.
  • Softened supply pressures continue to be a helper for cooling inflation.

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About the authors

A headshot photograph of Sofia Baig
Sofia Baig
Economist

Sofia Baig is an economist at decision intelligence company Morning Consult, where she works on descriptive and predictive analysis that leverages Morning Consult’s proprietary high-frequency data. Previously, she worked for the Federal Reserve Board as a quantitative analyst, focusing on topics related to monetary policy and bank stress testing. She received a bachelor’s degree in economics from Pomona College and a master’s degree in mathematics and statistics from Georgetown University.

Follow her on Twitter @_SofiaBaig_For speaking opportunities and booking requests, please email [email protected]

A headshot photograph of Kayla Bruun
Kayla Bruun
Senior Economist

Kayla Bruun is a senior economist at decision intelligence company Morning Consult, where she analyzes consumer spending, inflation and household finance trends, leveraging the company’s proprietary high-frequency data.

Prior to joining Morning Consult, Kayla was a key member of the corporate strategy team at telecommunications company SES, where she produced market intelligence and industry analysis of mobility markets. 

Kayla also served as an economist at IHS Markit, where she covered global services industries, provided price forecasts, produced written analyses and served as a subject-matter expert on client-facing consulting projects. 

Kayla earned a bachelor’s degree in economics from Emory University and an MBA with a certificate in nonmarket strategy from Georgetown University’s McDonough School of Business.

Follow her on Twitter @KaylaBruun. For speaking opportunities and booking requests, please email [email protected]