Producer prices jumped 1.8% in November, boosted by finished energy goods, as prices on an annual basis rose for the first time in a year, the Labor Department reported yesterday.

Wholesale core prices rose 0.5%, the largest increase since October 2008. Light motor truck prices jumped 4.2%, contributing to the higher core figure. Passenger car prices dropped 2.0%, the largest decline since October 2006.

Wholesalers' energy prices rose 6.9%, the largest increase since August. Gasoline prices surged 14.2% and accounted for about 60% of the jump in energy prices.

Producer prices rose 2.4% from a year ago. The increase ended 11 consecutive months of year-over-year producer price declines, and it was the largest increase since October 2008.

Producers' crude oil prices rose 7.0% as natural gas prices surged 25.5%, the largest increase in three years.

Economists expected producer prices to increase 0.8% in November and for core prices to be up 0.2%, according to the median estimate from Thomson Reuters.

The producer price index is the second monthly inflation gauge released by the Labor Department. The consumer price index will be released Wednesday.

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