Producer Prices rose last month at the highest rate since 1990.
U.S. wholesale prices rose 1.7 percent last month, the most since January 1990, led by a surge in energy costs. Excluding food and fuel, prices increased more than expected.
The rise in prices paid to factories, farmers and other producers followed a 0.1 percent gain in September, the Labor Department said in Washington. The core rate, which excludes food and energy, rose 0.3 percent for a second month.
A 6.8 percent jump in energy costs, the biggest since February of last year, didn’t prevent hiring from accelerating or consumers from buying more, government reports this month showed. Crude and home-heating oil prices have since retreated, suggesting demand may strengthen and make it easier for businesses to keep charging more. Treasury prices fell as the report boosted expectations Federal Reserve policy makers will raise interest rates next month.
Economists forecast a 0.6 percent rise in the October index, based on the median of 74 estimates in a Bloomberg News survey. The core rate was forecast to increase 0.1 percent.
So far this year, producer prices are rising at a 5.2 percent annual rate compared with a 4.7 percent increase at the same time last year. Core prices are increasing at a 2.2 percent annual pace, compared with a 1.4 percent gain in the first 10 months of 2003.