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Producer price index up modestly in January

Feb. 19, 2014 at 11:25 AM

WASHINGTON, Feb. 19 (UPI) -- The U.S. final demand producer price index -- previously called the finished goods index -- rose 0.2 percent in January, the Labor Department said Wednesday.

The department said it shifted to a final demand-intermediate demand system aggregation system to include prices producers received in services, construction, government purchases and exports, which were previously left out of the monthly report.

The new system "doubles current PPI converge of the United States economy to over 75 percent of in-scope domestic production," the department said.

The index for final demand rose 1.2 percent in January from January 2013, the largest advance since a similar 1.2 percent jump in October 2013.

The final demand index for food rose 1 percent in the month and for energy rose 0.3 percent.

The core items index, which excludes food and energy, rose 0.4 percent in the month.

The index under either name indicates that inflation remains tame, as can be expected with the near-stagnant job market and 35.8 of the unemployed listed as long-term unemployed.

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