There have been mixed economic signals since the beginning of the year. Investors and markets have gone from expecting four rate cuts this year to Federal Open Market Committee members wondering if there might be no more than one.

Some economists still think that, on the whole, things are improving.

"After the strong monthly readings in the first three months of the year caused progress on reducing inflation to be called into question, there was slightly better news on the headline and core readings of the April Consumer Price Index (CPI), both of which came in at 0.3%," wrote Pohlad Companies Chief Economist John Beuerlein. "This enabled the headline year-over-year measure to ease to 3.4% from 3.5%, while the core eased to 3.6% from 3.8%. The Fed's preferred measure of inflation, the core Personal Consumption Expenditure index (PCE), rose by 0.2% in April bringing its year-over-year reading to 2.8%, which was unchanged from March."

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