Wholesale prices in the United States were up for the third time over four months, showing the impact in part of rising fuel costs, Bloomberg reported, translating into higher inflation.
In data released Friday (Jan. 13), the Labor Department reported that the producer price index was up 0.3 percent for the month of December. That matched estimates from economists surveyed by Bloomberg. And it is a slightly less heady pace than the 0.4 percent seen in November. As measured year over year in December, the pricing index showed gains of 1.6 percent, which would be the fastest rate of increase in more than two years, since Sept. 2014.
The price index is watched as an inflation gauge, and the newswire reported that the growth in pricing indicates that inflation will continue to grow. The implication is that interest rates will continue to increase this year. Bloomberg stated that consumer demand and “more stable commodity costs” will work in tandem to keep prices linked to production “on an upward track.”
Among the most notable increases, energy prices were up 2.6 percent in December from November, driven by gas prices, up 7.8 percent. Food prices gained 0.7 percent. Services were up 0.1 percent, which showed some pacing slowdown from 0.5 percent gains in November.