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Experts weigh in ahead of US Labor Department's Wednesday inflation report

The report comes nearly one month after the Federal Reserve made its biggest interest rate hike in over two decades.

PENNSYLVANIA, USA — As Americans continue to grapple with historic inflation, the U.S. Department of Labor is set to deliver some potentially worrisome news on Wednesday.

That's when June's consumer price index figures will be released. 

"Certainly if it's still increasing that's rather troublesome," said Dr. Terrill Frantz, Associate Professor of E-Business and Cybersecurity at Harrisburg University of Science and Technology.

While experts predict the number will surpass the 8.6 percent rate recorded in May, they hope the month-to-month damage won't be as bad.

"Although it would not be a surprise to see it have a slight uptick to it but the monthly numbers should not, hopefully not, be as drastic as it has been over the last few months," said Dr. Frantz.

The report comes nearly one month after the Federal Reserve raised interest rates by three-quarters of a percentage point, its biggest hike in over two decades.

But the impact of that move isn't expected to be seen right away.

"It'll literally take 18-24 months until we see the results of that," said Dr. Frantz. "That's why it's such a difficult job because you're trying to predict what the economy looks like almost two years from now."

Gas prices are slowly trickling down and experts believe inflation could be reaching a peak. 

And while fears of a recession are looming, stores, airports, and entertainment venues continue to fill up.

"It's surprising that it really doesn't look like consumers are slowing down," said Dr. Frantz.

Realtors in south-central Pennsylvania add the local market remains extremely stable, despite a continued inventory shortage.

"It's a great time to buy or sell with the interest rates still," said John Rainville of BrokersRealty.com

That comes as brokers continue to keep their eye on employment numbers.

"People have to have jobs to buy houses, but typically what we've seen over the years is that when there's a reduction in jobs or the jobs peak up, the initial impact is in the rental market before it trickles into the purchasing sales of homes," said Rainville.

But the question remains, will Wednesday's numbers weaken consumer confidence? 

"These are very, very expensive times right now," said Dr. Frantz. "They will abate, the question is when will prices start to slow down?"

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