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The Producer Price Index (PPI) for finished goods continued its upward climb, rising at an annualized rate of 9.9 percent in April. Roughly 75 percent of that overall increase can be tied to a 34.4 percent spike in energy goods prices. Producer prices for energy goods have now risen 20 percent over the past year, compared to a 12-month growth rate of nearly 30 percent during the 2008 oil price shock. The overall PPI is up 6.9 percent over the past 12-months. Excluding volatile food and energy items, producer prices rose 3.5 percent in April and are trending at an annualized growth rate of 3.2 percent over the past three months, helping to nudge its longer-term (12-month) growth rate up to 2.1 percent, above 2 percent for the first time since August 2009. At earlier stages of production, pricing pressure was to the upside, as core intermediate goods rose 13.4 percent and core crude goods jumped up 37 percent after slipping down 25 percent in March.