The Labor Department said on Friday its producer
price index for final demand edged up 0.1 percent after a 0.4
percent rise in June. The increase was in line with economists'
Producer inflation data has been volatile since the government
revamped the PPI series at the start of the year to include
services and construction.
Swings in prices received for trade services, a gauge of margins
for retailers and wholesalers, have made it hard to see a clear
trend in producer prices.
Overall, inflation has been rising in recent months, a fact
acknowledged by the Federal Reserve at its July policy meeting.
The U.S. central bank, which had repeatedly warned that price
pressures were too low, said the likelihood of inflation running
persistently below its 2 percent target had diminished somewhat.
In the 12 months through July, producer prices increased 1.7
percent after rising by 1.9 percent in the year to June.
Last month, prices at the factory gate were held back by
declining energy prices. Gasoline prices fell 2.1 percent last
month after rising 6.4 percent in June. Food prices increased
0.4 percent in July.
Prices received for services at the final demand level nudged up
0.1 percent after rising 0.3 percent in the prior month.
Producer prices excluding food and energy gained 0.2 percent in
July after gaining 0.2 percent in June. In the 12 months through
June, the core PPI for final demand rose 1.6 percent. It had
increased 1.8 percent in June.
Producer prices excluding food, energy and trade services
increased 0.2 percent after June's 0.2 percent gain.
The government also introduced three new indexes to the series
focusing on personal consumption.
Personal consumption less food and energy rose 0.2 percent in
July after a 0.3 percent gain in June. Excluding food, energy
and trade services, the index increased 0.2 percent after a
similar rise in June.
(Reporting by Lucia Mutikani; Editing by Paul Simao)
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