October saw the highest wholesale inflation in six years with higher gas prices and costs for business equipment and machinery seeing significant increases.
- The producer price index registered a 0.6% increase in October after holding steady since July
- The increase was limited to a select number of goods with the core PPI excluding food, energy, and trade rising just 0.2%.
- Producer prices rose 2.9% in the 12 month period ending October, still significantly under the 3.3% seven-year high reached four months ago.
Annual core wholesale inflation dropped 0.1% to 2.8% with the cost of services rising a total of 0.7% in October. Wholesalers and retailers saw some of the biggest increases but as an industry is often viewed as too volatile to be a reliable short-term indicator.
However, in October there was a specific increase in machinery, equipment, parts, and industrial materials which could in this case be a result of the trade war and indicate that tariffs on such goods and materials are raising business costs.
Wholesale goods cost 0.6% more in October than the previous month with the majority of that being connected to rising oil prices, which may prove to have corrected itself in next months report.
Inflation has risen over the last two years but has begun to slow down overall. However, some economists believe that overall inflation will exceed the Fed’s target of 2% annually on the next year due to the strong labor market and rising GDP as well as the trade war increasing prices.
The Fed has introduced three rate hikes already this year to combat inflation, declining to introduce another hike this month in yesterday’s meeting but still likely to go ahead with a fourth in December.
Gold took losses today following the higher-than-expected PPI having already been under pressure earlier in the day from a rising dollar and falling crude oil prices. The recent data supports the introduction of more rate hikes which is bullish for the US dollar.
Spot gold is now down 1.15% and trading at $1,208.85/oz with December Comex Futures trading at $1,209.0/oz.