WASHINGTON (AP) — Wholesale prices in the United States rose 6.2% in December from a year earlier, a sixth straight monthly slowdown and a hopeful sign that inflation pressures will continue to cool.
The latest year-over-year figure was down from 7.3% in November and from a recent peak of 11.7% in March. On a monthly basis, the government said Wednesday that its producer price index, which measures costs before they reach consumers, dropped 0.5% from November to December.
The producer price data can provide an early sign of where consumer inflation might be headed. The data reflects the prices that are charged by manufacturers, farmers and wholesalers, and it flows into an inflation gauge that the Federal Reserve closely tracks: The personal consumption expenditures price index.
Rising evidence has suggested that inflation across the economy is easing after having reached a four-decade peak last summer. At the consumer level, inflation also cooled in December for a sixth straight month to 6.5% compared with a year earlier, from 7.1% in November.
An acceleration in workers’ wages has been slowing, too, which could further help control inflation. In December, average wage growth in the United States was up 4.6% from 12 months earlier, compared with a recent peak of 5.6% in March.
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