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Survey: Higher costs weighed on businesses in Q1

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By The Associated Press
Tuesday, April 22, 2014, 12:01 a.m.

Rising costs for materials and labor appeared to pressure businesses in the first quarter of the year, according to a quarterly survey from the National Association of Business Economics.

Thirty-one percent of businesses surveyed reported higher material costs, more than double the 15 percent in the previous survey. Thirty-five percent reported rising wages and salaries at their businesses in the past three months, up from 23 percent in January.

Yet the number of businesses that raised their prices in the past three months remained unchanged at 20 percent, according to the survey of 72 members, which was conducted between March 18 and April 1.

“It appears that businesses were not able to pass on costs increases, resulting in increased pressure on margins,” the survey findings said.

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