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S&P 500 falls on hot inflation and hawkish Fed

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The S&P 500 falls as inflation comes in hotter than investors were expecting and the Fed comes out saying it will continue to lift rates.

In a familiar story for investors, the market is being dominated by the US inflation figure.

And while there was some hope that it was falling, the latest consumer price index and retail sales report shows both were higher than expected.

This means the Fed might have to go further to cut inflation.

In response the S&P 500 fell 1.38%. EV manufacturer Tesla traded down 5.69%, helping to drag down the index.

Meanwhile the Dow Jones Industrial Average fell 1.26%, namely due to household names Microsoft and Disney, while the tech-heavy Nasdaq Composite had the biggest falls, slipping 1.78%.

Fed calls for more rate rises

Inflation doesn't seem to be going away as fast as Wall Street would like.

Figures that came on Tuesday show inflation rose 0.5% in January according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics.

It means the year-on-year inflation is now at 6.4%. Even with these elevated rates, it's worth pointing out inflation is cooling, falling down from 6.5% in December.

After the consumer price index and retail sales reports were both higher than markets were expecting, it added weight to the Fed continuing to lift rates.

This is despite pushing the official cash rate up 7 months in 2022 and lifting in early 2023.

Overnight, St. Louis Fed president James Bullard came out in support of another 0.5% rate rise to the US cash rate, even after lifting rates 7 times in 2022.

"Continued policy rate increases can help lock in a disinflationary trend during 2023, even with ongoing growth and strong labor markets," Bullard said, in a speech to a business group in Jackson, Tennessee.

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