U.S. Wholesale Inflation Again Topped Expectations in February - Modern Distribution Management

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U.S. Wholesale Inflation Again Topped Expectations in February

The figures raise concerns about lingering inflation amid a weakened industrial business cycle.
2022 forecast strong despite inflation

U.S. wholesale prices accelerated much faster than expected during February for a second-straight month, raising concerns about lingering inflation amid a weakened industrial business cycle.

The U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics monthly Producer Price Index report on March 14 showed that the index for total final demand had a 0.6% monthly increase — doubling the 0.3% estimate from Dow Jones to its largest one-month increase since August — and following January’s 0.3% increase that likewise topped expectations.

Excluding volatile food and energy components, “core PPI” accelerated by 0.3% month-to-month in February, ahead of an expected 0.2% increase. 

On an annual basis, the index for total final demand jumped 1.6% — the biggest such move since September.

The PPI report came two days after the February Consumer Price Index for final demand rose 0.4% month-over-month and 3.2% year-over-year — with the monthly measure in line with expectations while the annual figure was slightly higher. Core CPI rose 0.4% from January and was up 3.8% year-over-year.

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