Last month, U.S. producer prices showed increases as gasoline prices rose as well as the cost of other goods, producing the largest annual gain in six years. The Labor Department’s report proposed a visible acceleration in wholesale price pressures, which could ease concerns among some Federal Reserve officials regarding low inflation.
The Labor Department reported its producer price index for final demand gained 0.4 percent in November, continuing its progression for three months. In last year through November, the PPI gained 3.1 percent, the largest gain seen since January 2012.
A key gauge of underlying producer price pressures which does not include food, energy and trade services increased 0.4 percent in November. The core PPI increased 0.2 percent for two months in a row, rising 2.4 percent in the 12 months through November. Thi is the largest gain since in August 2014.
The dollar made headway against a basket of currencies on the data, while prices for U.S. Treasuries dropped. U.S. stock index futures were trading somewhat higher.
The broad rise in producer prices supports the idea that weak inflation from the first half of 2017 has most likely ended. Fed officials were concerned that the factors that brought inflation down earlier this year may become more persistent. The Fed officials were obligated to attend the two-day policy meeting, while U.S. central bank is expected to raise interest rates for a third time this year.
The central bank tracks the personal consumption expenditures (PCE) price index ignoring food and energy, which has not hit the Fed’s target of 2 percent over the last six years.
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In November, gas prices rose by 15.8 percent, the largest gain since August 2009. Gasoline made up for two thirds of the 1.0 percent increase in the final demand goods index. Wholesale food prices increased by 0.3 percent following the increase 0.5 percent in October. Prices for services rose by 0.2 percent following a 0.5 percent increase the month prior.
Core goods rose 0.3 percent, gaining the same margin for a third consecutive month. Prices for passenger cars rose 0.5 percent, the largest increase since December 2016. The cost of healthcare services was unchanged.