US wholesale inflation spike unprecedented
WASHINGTON – Inflation at the wholesale level climbed 8.3% last month from August 2020, the biggest annual gain since the Labor Department started calculating the 12-month number in 2010.
The Labor Department reported Friday that its producer price index – which measures inflationary pressures before they reach consumers – rose 0.7% last month from July after increasing 1% in June and July.
Inflation has been stirring as the economy recovers from last year’s brief but intense coronavirus recession. Supply chain bottlenecks and a shortage of workers have pushed prices higher.
Excluding volatile food and energy prices, so-called core producer prices rose 0.6% from July and 6.7% from a year earlier.
Food prices were up 2.9% last month after falling in July. Over the past year, wholesale food prices have climbed 12.7%, including surges of 59.2% for beef and 43.5% for shortening and cooking oil. Energy prices rose 0.4% from July and are up 32.3% over the past year.