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August Inflation Another Headwind for Marine

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Inflation in the United States is persisting at higher-than-forecast levels, according to government statistics for August, further pointing to a potential rough patch for the boating industry.

The Consumer Price Index increased 8.3 percent in August compared with the same month a year prior, the Department of Labor said in its monthly statement this morning. Core inflation, which excludes food and energy, rose 0.6 percent in August from July.

“The indexes for shelter, medical care, household furnishings and operations, new vehicles, motor vehicle insurance, and education were among those that increased over the month,” the Bureau of Labor Statistics said in the statement. “There were some indexes that declined in August, including those for airline fares, communication, and used cars and trucks.”

The bond yield curve became more inverted this morning, and stock futures declined on the news, which was perceived as all but guaranteeing additional interest rate hikes from the Federal Reserve.

Joe Altobello, a managing director and leisure product analyst at Raymond James, told Trade Only Today that this morning’s inflation numbers likely will make some would-be boat buyers less confident and ultimately will result in financing becoming more expensive.

“It increases the likelihood of a still-aggressive Fed” in maintaining a brisk pace of rate hikes, Altobello says. “For big-ticket discretionary items, it’s highly negative. This does impact the lower end of the [boat] market.”

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