Business-Level Inflation Falls Unexpectedly

The producer-price index fell 0.1% in December from a month earlier, the first decline since August 2016

WASHINGTON—U.S. producer prices fell in December for the first time in more than a year, a sign inflation pressures remain modest even though the economy appeared to pick up steam last year.

The producer-price index, a measure of the prices businesses fetched for their goods and services, fell 0.1% in December from a month earlier, the Labor Department said Thursday. That marked the first decline since August 2016.

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