All three major stock benchmarks were trading sharply lower Friday morning after government data showed inflation surged more than expected in May to the highest annual rate since 1981. The Dow Jones Industrial Average was down around 585 points, or 1.8%, while the S&P 500 slid 2% and the Nasdaq Composite dropped 2.2%, according to FactSet data, at last check. The U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics reported Friday that the consumer-price index jumped 1% in May. That’s above the 0.7% advance expected by economists polled by The Wall Street Journal. The large rise pushed the pace of inflation over the past year to 8.6%, the highest rate since 1981.
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