Energy Costs Send Wholesale Prices Rising

Knoxville — Wholesale prices rose a full percentage point in March, the federal government said Thursday.

And a University of Tennessee economist said rising energy prices had much to do with that increase.

“When you take out the influence of what we see as very volatile energy prices in the last several months,” said Dr. Matt Murray, “the core rate of the Producer Price Index is really quite flat.”

The increase in the PPI was more than economists were expected.

Murray said higher prices will likely result in a jump in inflation.

“In order to cool the economy off in general, and to take the pressure off rising petroleum prices,” said Murray, “I think we can see at least one more round of interest rate increases by the Federal Reserve.”