Producer Price collapse worst since the Great Depression

This morning the Bureau of Labor Statistics reported that Producer Prices declined (-1.9%) in December. Annual PPI for 2008 was (-1.2%), the first decline since 1950.

In the last 5 months, producer prices have declined (-8.2%). This far eclipses the dot.com decline of (-3.2%) in 2001-2, and the post-WW2 decline of (-6.2%) in 1949-50.

We are witnessing the biggest price collapse since the Great Depression.

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do you have the PPI

collapse of the Great Depression? Did they keep those numbers back then?

This is astounding.

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Official PPI starts in 1947

but we know CPI and commodities were inflating all during WW2, so clearly so was PPI for finished goods.

We do have commodity PPI from 1913, and Friedman has "wholesale prices" in his "Monetary History". I can't speak for the latter (yet), but the former were also inflating during WW2.

So, clearly this is the biggest decline since the 1930s.

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what I am wondering is

does it equal or exceed the decline in the 1930's.

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The 1930s decline was probably

much larger (CPI declined 25%, PPI probably declined even more sharply).

Hopefully I can give you an "official" answer within the week if not sooner.

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