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US futures drop as July wholesale prices unchanged

August 14, 2013

NEW YORK (AP) — Stock futures fell after the U.S. reported Wednesday that wholesale prices were unchanged in July as energy prices retreated.

Most economists expected a slight increase and the U.S. Federal Reserve, during its most recent meeting, said that inflation persistently below 2 percent could pose risks to the economy.

That overshadowed positive news, including the European Union’s emergence from recession.

Dow Jones industrial futures slipped 40 points to 15,371. S&P futures gave up 4.1 points to 1,686.70. Nasdaq futures fell 3.75 points to 3,1,33.25.

The Labor Department reported Wednesday that wholesale prices showed no change last month compared with June, when they had risen 0.8 percent. That was the most in nine months.

For the 12 months ending in June, overall consumer prices rose 1.8 percent and core prices 1.6 percent.

Those levels are below the Fed’s 2 percent target for inflation.

Also dragging down stocks was the disappointing second-quarter numbers posted by Macy’s Wednesday.

U.S. consumers will have a critical part in any full recovery for the U.S. because they drive 70 percent of economic activity.

Macy’s lowered its outlook for the year, suggesting to some that many Americans remain worried about jobs and salaries.

Deere & Co., however, rode booming agricultural activity in North and South America during its third quarter and posted a 27 percent jump in profit.

European markets moved in the opposite direction Wednesday after the 17 countries that use the euro saw economic output grow by 0.3 percent in the second quarter. It’s the first growth to be recorded since late 2011.

Cisco will post financial results after the closing bell.

Update hourly