Economic Report: U.S. producer prices flat in August

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Wholesale prices are barely rising, keeping inflation low.

U.S. wholesale prices were flat in August, mostly because of sharp declines in the cost of food and gasoline.

Economists surveyed by MarketWatch had predicted a 0.1% increase in the producer price index.

In August, the wholesale cost of food tumbled 1.6%, the biggest drop in almost three and a half years. Gasoline prices slid 2.5%.

U.S. wholesale prices have been tame for years. In the past 12 months, the producer price index is unchanged.

If the volatile food, energy and trade margin categories are stripped out, so-called core prices rose a faster 0.3%.

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