U.S. wholesale prices increased by 1.3 percent in January, pushed higher by a big jump in energy costs.
The bigger-than-expected increase in the producer price index, which measures inflation pressures before they reach consumers, was the largest one-month gain on records that go back to 2009, according to the Labor Department on Wednesday. It followed much milder inflation readings of 0.3 percent in December and 0.1 percent in November.
The big jump, which reflected higher costs for energy and services, left wholesale prices rising over the past 12 months by 1.7 percent, the largest 12-month increase in a year. Core inflation, which excludes volatile energy and food, increased by 1.2 percent in January, and 2 percent over the past 12 months.