Weekend reads: Rising inflation and the Federal Reserve’s response to it

U.S. consumer prices rose 0.9% in June — a big increase for one month and, in fact, the largest since 2008.

But Federal Reserve Chairman Jerome Powell said during congressional testimony Thursday that it will take time before labor market improvements point to a change in the central bank’s policies that are keeping interest rates very low. A decline in bond yields indicates that investors aren’t worried about inflation, at least not yet.

Here’s a sampling of MarketWatch’s coverage of inflation and its implications for consumers, investors and policymakers:

A change of mind about where to retire

Cummins Falls State Park near Cookeville, Tenn. (Getty Images/iStockphoto)

As part of her Where Should I Retire series, Silvia Ascarelli suggests three possible locations for a couple that had planned to retire in Utah and now wants to consider different places because of concerns about drought and pollution.

For your own retirement location search, try MarketWatch’s upgraded retirement location tool, which now includes data for more than 3,000 U.S. counties.

How to fix an underfunded state pension system

Andrea Riquier interviews David Eager, who took over as executive director of the Kentucky Public Pension Authority five years ago, when it was considered one of the worst-funded state retirement systems in the U.S. Eager has a positive view of the political aspects of the job, as he has been able to “[get] the train on the track.”

An inheritance quandary

It can be difficult to agree with family members about what to do with an inherited home. (Getty Images/iStockphoto)

Jacob Passy writes The Big Move column. This week he helps a man who has inherited a house with his brother and sister. The good news is there’s no mortgage loan. But they disagree about what to do next.

Bubbly markets

Michael Brush warns that there are signs the stock market is due for a correction, which is typically defined as a decline of 10% or more. Mark Hulbert has a similar warning for bond investors and two strategies for surviving a stock-market crash.

Other opinions about the health of securities markets:

  • Expect a 10% or worse correction in U.S. stocks by mid-August, says this forecaster with a proven track record

  • MarketWatch Options Trader: Stay bullish on the S&P 500 for now despite a number of red flags

Child tax-credit payments are rolling

For 2021, the federal tax credit per child has been increased to a maximum of $3,600 from $2,000. Rather than making people wait until they file their 2021 tax returns in 2022, the Internal Revenue Service is sending electronic payments for checks for half the credit in monthly instalments that started July 15.

Here’s related coverage:

The shifting job market

Small-business owners are increasingly confident as the U.S. economy has recovered, but a record number are raising wages as qualified workers are hard to find. Meanwhile, an increasing number of workers are losing their jobs in the gig economy, as employers outsource.

A comparison of two electrotrucks

The GMC Hummer EV is driven by next-generation propulsion technology that enables unprecedented off-road capability, extraordinary on-road performance and an immersive driving experience.

Matt DeLorenzo of Kelly Blue Book compares two electric truck models from General Motors Co.
and Tesla Inc.
that drivers are clamoring to see on the road: The GMC Hummer and Tesla’s Cybertruck.

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