BERLIN (AP) -- German producer prices were down 7.8 percent on the year in July, their biggest drop since records began in 1949, official data showed Wednesday.
The drop, powered by a steep fall in oil and energy prices from their peak a year earlier, followed a 4.6 percent decline in June, the Federal Statistical Office said. It was the fifth consecutive month of year-on-year declines.
Prices were down 1.5 percent compared with June 2009.
Producer prices -- also called wholesale prices -- measure the cost of industrial products at the factory gate and are seen as an important gauge of inflation before it reaches consumers.
Consumer prices in Germany, Europe's biggest economy, went into reverse last month for the first time since 1987. Sharp year-on-year falls in energy costs pushed them down 0.5 percent on the year.