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Economic Report: U.S. producer prices downshift for first time since 2020 recession

The numbers: The U.S. producer price index fell 0.5% in July, the Labor Department said Thursday. That’s down from a 1.0% jump in June.

Economists polled by The Wall Street Journal had forecast a 0.2% advance.

The core producer price index, which excludes volatile food and energy prices, rose 0.2% in July, down from a 0.3% gain in the prior month.

Key details: Over the past year, the headline PPI was up 9.8% in July, down from 11.3% in the prior month.

Core prices are up 5.8% from a year earlier, down from 6.4% in June.

The cost of goods fell 1.8 % in July, the largest decline since the 2020 pandemic recession.

The cost of services inched up 0.1% last month, down slightly from 0.3% in June.

Energy prices dropped 9% in July, down sharply from a 9.4% gain in the prior month.

Wholesale food prices jumped 1% after a 0.2% drop in June.

Big picture: Economists don’t expect too much more moderation in producer prices until later in the fall.

Market reaction: U.S. stocks
DJIA,
+1.63%

SPX,
+2.13%

were set to open higher Thursday after strong gains in the prior trading session.

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