US producer prices dip in October

US producer prices fell percent in October after four straight months of rises, the Labor Department said Wednesday.

The producer price index fell 0.2 percent from September, led by a drop in energy prices of 0.5 percent. Food prices rose 0.4 percent.

Most analysts had expected PPI to rise 0.1 percent.

Excluding food and energy products, prices dropped for the first time since November 2010, by 0.2 percent.

The pullback in producer prices came after sharp rises in September and August that averaged 1.4 percent.

"Input prices will struggle to advance while uncertainty about US fiscal policy and global economic growth persists," said Arijit Dutta at Moody's Analytics.

Superstorm Sandy, which battered the eastern US in late October, had virtually no impact on the preparation of the PPI reading, the department said.

"Crude oil prices peaked in September and have fallen steadily in recent weeks as supply disruptions have proved temporary and the result of concerns that demand is slowing," Dutta said.

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