GB: Producer Price Index

Tue Nov 14 03:30:00 CST 2017

Consensus Actual Previous Revised
Output-M/M 0.3% 0.2% 0.2%
Output-Y/Y 2.9% 2.8% 3.3%
Input-M/M 1.0% 1.0% 0.4% 0.2%
Input-Y/Y 4.8% 4.6% 8.4% 8.1%

Factory gate prices rose a slightly weaker than expected monthly 0.2 percent in October. With base effects quite strongly negative, this was small enough to reduce annual output price inflation from 3.3 percent to 2.8 percent, its second decline in a row and its lowest reading since last November.

The monthly increase in prices was largely due to food (0.6 percent), paper and printing (0.5 percent) and petroleum products (0.4 percent). The only falls were in transport equipment and the other manufactured goods category (both 0.1 percent). Still, the core output price index was just 0.1 percent higher on the month which saw its yearly rate slip 0.4 percentage points to 2.1 percent.

Meantime, input costs were up 1.0 percent versus September, matching expectations and, courtesy of a particularly sharp monthly spike a year ago, reducing annual inflation from 8.1 percent to 4.6 percent. A steady sterling trade weighted index helped to limit import charges.

Today's update suggests that pipeline inflation pressures in manufacturing have probably peaked. Sterling weakness remains a major threat but if the pound can stabilise, upcoming PPI data should be increasingly less troublesome.

The Producer Price Index (PPI) measures the prices of goods bought and sold by manufacturers. The input price index measure the prices of materials and fuels purchased by manufacturers for processing. These are not limited to just those materials used in the final product, but also include what is required by the company in its normal day-to-day running. The output price index captures prices charged by manufacturers as they pass through the factory gate and excludes any VAT or similar deductible tax. Both measures may be seen as leading indicators of consumer price index (CPI) inflation although the short-term correlation is only very weak.

The PPI measures prices at the producer level before they are passed along to consumers. Since the producer price index measures prices of consumer goods and capital equipment, a portion of the inflation at the producer level gets passed through to the consumer price index (CPI). By tracking price pressures in the pipeline, investors can anticipate inflationary consequences in coming months. A producer's price is the amount received by a producer from the purchaser of a unit of goods or services produced as output less any value added tax (VAT) or similar deductible tax, invoiced to the purchaser. It excludes any transportation charges invoiced separately by the producer.

The PPI provides a key measure of inflation alongside the consumer price indexes and GDP deflators. The output price indexes measure change in manufacturer' goods prices produced and often are referred to as factory gate prices. Input prices are not limited to just those materials used in the final product, but also include what is required by the company in its normal day-to-day operations.

The PPI is considered a precursor of both consumer price inflation and profits. If the prices paid to manufacturers increase, businesses are faced with either charging higher prices or taking a cut in profits. The ability to pass along price increases depends on the strength and competitiveness of the marketplace.

The bond market rallies when the PPI decreases or posts only small increases, but bond prices fall when the PPI posts larger-than-expected gains. The equity market rallies with the bond market because low inflation promises low interest rates and is good for profits.