Consumer prices keep on rising. Where does it end?

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fairly easy
From lumber and steel to paint and burrito bowls at Chipotle, prices are rising almost everywhere you look. That's putting investors on high alert.
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London (CNN Business) From lumber and steel to paint and burrito bowls at Chipotle, prices are rising almost everywhere you look . That's putting investors on high alert.

What's happening: Wall Street is training its attention on the Consumer Price Index for May, which arrives on Thursday. The report is expected to show that prices excluding food and energy continued to notch strong gains last month, rising 3.4% over the previous year.

Including food and energy, economists believe consumer prices leaped 4.7% in the past 12 months. That would be the biggest jump since summer 2008.

Traders are worried that inflation could force central banks to pull back support for the economy sooner than they'd otherwise like, hampering the fragile global recovery.

For now, reassurances from policymakers, who have maintained that price increases are temporary, appear to be working.

"I doubt the [Federal Reserve] will be spooked and I doubt markets will be unless we get the core well above [3.5%]," Societe Generale strategist Kit Juckes said in a research note Thursday, referring to the inflation reading without gas and food.

On Thursday, China's central bank governor Yi Gang said in Shanghai that "price levels are generally under control and that the People's Bank of China should "implement normal monetary policy."

The European Central Bank, which met Thursday in Frankfurt, did not change its policy, issuing a statement that was essentially unchanged from its decision in April. Investors will pay close attention to any comments on inflation from ECB President Christine Lagarde during a press conference.

"We expect the ECB to avoid any tapering talk," Dutch bank ING told clients, referencing discussions about when the central bank will slow down asset purchases, a major part of its stimulus program.

But a growing chorus of voices is insisting…
Julia Horowitz, CNN Business
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