US wholesale inflation continued to post solid gains in February, with one measure seeing its fastest increase in nearly five years, the Labor Department reported Tuesday.
The data release came shortly before the central bank was due to begin a two-day meeting at which policymakers are expected to raise interest rates partly to stave off rising inflation.
The Producer Price Index, which measures prices from the seller's perspective, rose 0.3 percent for the month, down from January's 0.6 percent rate, which was the fastest monthly gain in more than four years.
But the montly rise was higher than the 0.1 percent analysts had been expecting.
And for the 12 months ended in February the index gained 2.2 percent, the biggest increase since March 2012.
A strong 0.4 percent gain in prices for services accounted for more than 80 percent of February's increase. Goods prices rose 0.3 percent.
Excluding the more volatile categories of food, energy and trade, producer prices rose 0.3 percent, the largest increase since April of last year.