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US stocks dip as data show another inflation spike

Financial stock exchange market display screen board on the street

Financial stock exchange market display screen board on the street

Wall Street stocks dipped early Tuesday following another troublesome inflation report just ahead of a two-day Federal Reserve meeting.

Producer prices for the past year spiked to 6.6 percent in May, the highest in the history of the data set dating back to 2010, the US Labor Department said.

The new data were released on the first day of the Fed’s policy meeting, and will ramp up pressure on central bankers to pay more attention to inflation in the world’s largest economy.

The Fed is widely expected to maintain its current accommodative posture, arguing that recent price increases will prove ephemeral.

About 20 minutes into trading, the Dow Jones Industrial Average was down 0.4 percent at 34,270.20.

The broad-based S&P 500 slipped 0.1 percent to 4,249.85, while the tech-rich Nasdaq Composite Index declined 0.1 percent to 14,163.05.

Also Tuesday, government data showed a 1.3 percent drop in US retail sales in May.

Despite the contraction in spending, the report shows key sectors growing strongly in May from the slumps seen a year ago when the Covid-19 pandemic forced businesses shut and pushed consumers to reprioritize spending.

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