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USA: surprise decline in producer prices in May

( - U.
S. producer prices fell unexpectedly in May, driven by lower energy prices, according to statistics released Thursday by the U.S. Department of Labor.

The Producer Price Index (PPI) for final demand declined by 0.2% last month, after rising by 0.5% in April, whereas economists were forecasting a 0.1% month-on-month increase.

On a year-on-year basis, the PPI rose by 2.2%.

The index measuring underlying pressure on producer prices, which excludes food, energy and commercial services, was perfectly stable last month, following a gain of 0.5% in April.

On a year-on-year basis, growth in this 'core' index stood at 3.2%.

These lower-than-expected figures come after the Labor Department announced yesterday that the consumer price index (CPI) rose less than expected in May.

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