Stateside wholesale inflation flat in July

Producer prices in the United States were unchanged in July for the first time in seven months, as a modest increase in the cost of goods was offset by a drop in services, but underlying producer inflation continued to push higher.

Figures released by the U.S. Labor Department said on Thursday the unchanged reading in its producer price index for final demand followed a 0.3% increase in June. In the 12 months through July, the PPI advanced 3.3%, slowing after June's 3.4% increase.

Economists had forecast the PPI increasing 0.2% in July and rising 3.4% year-on-year.

A key measure of underlying producer price pressures that excludes food, energy and trade services rose 0.3% last month. The so-called core PPI rose by the same margin in June.

In the 12 months through July, the core PPI increased 2.8% after rising 2.7% in June.

Last month's weak PPI reading is likely temporary against the backdrop of a strong labour market and robust economy. The Trump administration's import tariffs on lumber, steel and aluminum, as well as a range of Chinese goods, are also expected to boost price pressures.