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Easy-to-Digest Summary of July’s Wholesale Prices

Elinor Rozenvasser Updated: August 27, 2023 • 2 min read

Key Points:

  • July's Surprise Jump: The wholesale prices in July saw a 0.3% rise, higher than the expected 0.2%, marking the largest increase since January.

  • Goods vs. Services: While the prices for most goods remained stable, services experienced a spike. Notably, investment advice fees surged by 7.6%.

  • Federal Reserve's Watchful Eye: Despite these changes, the Federal Reserve is closely monitoring the situation, and current indicators suggest they might not increase interest rates in the immediate future.

In July, the wholesale prices (the prices that goods and services producers receive for their products) went up more than folks expected. The Bureau of Labor Statistics said that it increased by 0.3%. That's the biggest jump we've seen since January.

To put it simply, if you leave out food and energy costs (because they can be unpredictable), the increase was still 0.3%. Over the past year, that rate was about 2.4%, which is the lowest since January 2021. Financial experts had guessed the increase would only be 0.2%, so this was a surprise. If we look at the big picture, over the past year, the overall increase was just 0.8%.

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July's Market Drop

Following this news, markets dropped a bit. The cost of services went up by 0.5% in July. A big chunk of that rise came from prices for giving investment advice (a whopping 7.6% surge). There was also a rise in prices for trade services and transportation.

On the other hand, the prices for goods (like the stuff you buy) only went up by a tiny bit, 0.1%. Food prices, though, saw a 0.5% increase. Meat prices jumped 5%, while costs for many gas fuels increased. However, diesel prices went down by 7.1%.

This update on the Producer Price Index (PPI) came after another report about the Consumer Price Index (CPI). That index, which reflects the prices consumers pay, also went up by 0.2% in July.

The Federal Reserve (the folks who decide on big financial policies) keeps a close eye on both these indexes. There's been talk about whether they should raise interest rates (a tool to manage inflation). But given some recent info, it looks like they might not increase the rates for now.

Given the recent info, it looks like the Federal Reserve might not increase the rates for now.

What does this mean for you and your finances?

All these numbers might sound fancy, but here's the deal: when wholesale prices rise, it's often a signal that companies are facing higher costs. Sometimes, companies pass these costs on to consumers. That means you might end up seeing some items or services get a bit more expensive. On the bright side, the Federal Reserve (the central bank) is watching these trends closely, and they might take action to keep prices stable. So, keep an eye on your budget, be mindful of changes in prices, and as always, plan smartly for the future!

Elinor Rozenvasser is a content writer and editor with a knack for finance. She holds a Bachelor's in Communications and Business from Reichman University, and has been swimming alongside finance specialists for over a decade. She's not your typical financial writer, though. She's more likely to use witty puns and sarcasm than jargon and technical terms. But don't let that fool you. She's still a whiz when it comes to explaining complex financial concepts in a way that anyone can understand. If there's any writer who can make finance fun and engaging, Elinor is your girl. She's sure to leave you laughing (and learning) long after you've finished reading her work.