Inflation Eases, Trade Deficit Narrows

New data is mostly positive, and unlikely to influence interest rates
By Heather McPherson,  Newser User
Posted Aug 14, 2007 10:55 AM CDT
Farmers prepare corn for ethanol.   (KRT Photos)
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(Newser) – With the exception of energy and food, inflation at the wholesale level rose less than expected last month, while the US trade deficit got slimmer, thanks to an increase in exports. Still, a rise in energy costs in July led to an unexpected .06% uptick in the producer price index after the rate fell 0.2% in June.

The news, contained in separate government reports out today, suggests that the surging global economy is helping to offset the domestic housing downturn, Bloomberg reports. Experts say the data is likely to reassure the inflation-phobic Fed, which voted last week to keep the short-term interest rate steady, even in the face of the huge stock market selloff.