Producer Price Index Flat In March

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WASHINGTON, (UPI) — The U.S. Producer Price Index for finished goods was unchanged February to March, the Bureau of Labor Statistics reported Thursday.

Economists had predicted a 0.2 percent bump in prices producers charge for finished goods. Core prices, which exclude food and energy — did rise 0.3 percent in the month. But energy prices alone dropped 1 percent while food prices separately rose 0.2 percent.

Energy prices, which made up the difference in March, with a 2 percent decline in the gasoline index, seasonally adjusted.

What consumers saw at the pump was the unadjusted price of gasoline, which rose 7.5 percent at the producer level. Generally, these prices are passed on down the line to the customer level.

On an annual basis, finished goods price inflation settled at 2.8 percent for the month, down from 3.3 percent in February and down from 4.1 percent in January.

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