Price Pressures Mount for Higher Interest Rates

pressureThe latest Producer Price Index (PPI) report from the Bureau of Labor Statistics shows price increases for crude, wholesale, and finished goods for the month of November, including the first 12-month increase in finished goods prices since November 2008. The unexpected jump in finished goods prices was largely due to higher energy prices, which jumped 6.9 percent. The core PPI, which excludes food and energy prices, also showed its biggest jump in about a year.

The total PPI for finished goods rose 1.8 percent. Market analysts expected an increase of 0.3 percent in the finished goods index. The core PPI rose 0.5 percent; analysts were expecting a -0.6 percent change.

The report, released today, also shows price increases for business services. Gasoline stations led the increase with a 36.5 percent rise in the margin index for gasoline stations. The transportation index also increased while the index for traditional services fell slightly due to declines in medical and hospital prices.

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