US producer price index decreases slightly in September owing to falling food costs

The US producer price index fell 0.1 per cent in September, following analyst expectations it would rise by 0.2 per cent, and August's increase of 0.3 per cent. Year-on-year, the index continued to point to soft inflation, up by 0.3 per cent.

Prices for finished consumer foods fell 1.0 per cent - the largest decline since April of this year. Energy costs, by contrast, were up 0.5 per cent in September.

The index for fresh and dry vegetables dropped by 17.9 per cent, accounting for two thirds of the September decline. Cheaper fizzy soft drinks and processed poultry also contributed.

When it came to energy, one third of September's increase can be put down to a six per cent jump in the index for home heating oil. Residential natural gas prices were also higher.

Exluding food and energy, the index rose marginally by 0.1 per cent, in line with expectations and following no increase in August.