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Some good inflation news: Wholesale prices fell in August

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By Alicia Wallace, CNN Business

(CNN) - Just one day after August's disappointing Consumer Price Index report triggered a meltdown on Wall Street, a separate inflation report indicated that wholesale price increases are showing signs of improvement.

The Producer Price Index, which tracks average changes in the prices paid to producers of goods and services, rose by 8.7% in the 12 months ended in August.

Prices fell by 0.1% in the month from July to August, according to data from the Bureau of Labor Statistics released Wednesday.

Economists expected year-over-year PPI to rise by 8.8% and to fall by 0.1% from July, according to Refinitiv estimates.

Since PPI captures price changes happening further upstream, the report is considered by some to be a leading indicator for broader inflationary trends and what consumers could potentially see at the store level.

Stripping out the more volatile components of food and energy, core PPI increased 0.2% from July and is up by 8.1% for the 12 months ending in August.

Tuesday's hot CPI report showed annual price inflation hit 8.3% in August. While that was a tick down from July's 8.5%, the data also showed that core CPI, which strips out volatile gas and food prices, rose at twice the projected rate, dashing hopes that inflation has hit its peak.

America has been battling decades-high inflation in recent months, with the Federal Reserve implementing a series of historic rate hikes in an attempt to slow the economy and discourage further spending.

In the meantime, consumers are paying hundreds of dollars more each month as prices for food, shelter and health care surge.

This week's two key inflation reports will provide crucial context for Fed policymakers, who meet next week to determine the scope of the central bank's next rate hike. Tuesday's CPI report has already pushed some analysts to call for a 100-basis-point increase, up from recent expectations of a third-straight 75 basis points.

This story is developing and will be updated.

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