U.S. Wholesale Prices Fall in December

Meanwhile, industrial production rebounded after a contraction in November.

U.S. wholesale prices fell slightly in December, pulled down by drops in energy and food costs, the government said Wednesday.

Meanwhile industrial production rebounded in the month after a contraction in November, separate official data showed.

Overall wholesale prices slipped 0.1% from November, confirming the trend of easing inflationary pressures in the second half of the year, according to data from the Labor Department.

Food and energy prices both lost 0.8% in the month, while wholesale prices for all other goods pushed 0.3% higher.

Year-on-year, wholesale prices were 4.8% higher, down from the 7.1% annual pace reached in July after a global surge in a wide range of commodity prices.

Federal Reserve data on industrial production showed an 0.4% increase in December from the previous month, driven mainly by the manufacturing sector. The year-on-year expansion was 2.9%.

"This is another cheering piece of news for economic activity in the U.S.," Inna Mufteeva of Natixis said.

"Indeed, if the overall figure posted a rebound of 0.4%, the manufacturing production rose at even faster pace of 0.9% over the month thanks to machinery and electronics sectors."

Copyright Agence France-Presse, 2011

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