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U.S. Import Price Index decreased 0.9% in June


U.S. import prices decreased 0.9 percent in June, the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics reported today, after recording no change in May. Falling prices for both fuel and nonfuel imports in June contributed to the overall decrease. Prices for U.S. exports fell 0.7 percent in June following a 0.2-percent decline the previous month.

Imports
Prices for U.S. imports declined 0.9 percent in June, the first monthly decrease since the index fell 1.4 percent in December 2018. Import prices decreased 2.0 percent over the past 12 months, the largest over-the-year drop since the index fell 2.2 percent from August 2015 to August 2016.

Fuel Imports: Import fuel prices fell 6.5 percent in June following a 2.3-percent advance the previous month. The June downturn was the first monthly decline since the index decreased 13.3 percent in December 2018. Lower petroleum and natural gas prices in June both contributed to the overall fall in fuel prices. The price index for import petroleum declined 6.2 percent in June, after rising 2.4 percent in May. Natural gas prices fell 21.0 percent in June and 58.4 percent in the second quarter of 2019. Import fuel prices declined 6.6 percent over the past 12 months, driven by a 7.4-percent drop in petroleum prices. Natural gas prices declined 1.2 percent over the past year as the drop in the second quarter largely offset a 126.6-percent increase in the fourth quarter of 2018.

All Imports Excluding Fuel: Nonfuel import prices fell 0.3 percent for the second consecutive month in June. Lower prices for foods, feeds, and beverages; nonfuel industrial supplies and materials; capital goods; and consumer goods more than offset rising prices for automotive vehicles. Prices for nonfuel imports declined 1.4 percent over the past 12 months, the same over-the-year decline recorded in May. The decline from June 2018 to June 2019 was primarily driven by decreasing prices for nonfuel industrial supplies and materials.

Nonfuel Industrial Supplies and Materials: Prices for nonfuel industrial supplies and materials declined 0.6 percent in June, after falling 1.0-percent in May. The June decrease was driven by a 1.0-percent drop in unfinished metals prices and a 0.8-percent decrease in chemicals prices.

Finished Goods: Finished goods prices were mostly down in June. Capital goods prices fell 0.2 percent and have not recorded a monthly advance since the index rose 0.1 percent in March 2018. The June decline was led by a 0.6-percent drop in the price index for computers, peripherals, and semiconductors. Consumer goods prices also decreased, edging down 0.1 percent. In contrast, prices for automotive vehicles ticked up 0.1 percent in June.

Foods, Feeds, and Beverages: The price index for import foods, feeds, and beverages decreased 1.5 percent in June, the largest monthly drop since the index fell 1.6 percent in November 2018. The June decline was driven by a 10.3-percent decrease in fruit prices.

Exports
U.S. export prices fell 0.7 percent in June, after decreasing 0.2 percent in May. The June decline was the largest monthly drop for the index since a 0.8-percent decrease in November 2018. The price index for overall exports fell 1.6 percent for the year ended in June, the largest 12-month decline since the index decreased 2.4 percent from August 2015 to August 2016.

Agricultural Exports: Prices for agricultural exports increased 2.7 percent in June following a 1.1-percent decline the previous month. The advance was the largest monthly rise since the index increased 3.8 percent in December 2018. In June, the advance was led by a 13.5-percent rise in corn prices and a 5.0-percent increase in soybean prices; higher fruit, wheat, and nut prices also contributed to the overall rise in agricultural prices. Despite the June advance, agricultural export prices fell 1.9 percent from June 2018 to June 2019. The drop over the past year was led by a 14.4-percent decrease in soybean prices.

All Exports Excluding Agriculture: Prices for nonagricultural exports decreased 1.1 percent in June, after declining 0.2 percent in May. The June drop was the largest monthly decrease since the index fell 1.1 percent in December 2018. In June, lower prices for nonagricultural industrial supplies and materials more than offset higher prices for capital goods and consumer goods. Nonagricultural prices declined 1.6 percent over the past year, the largest 12-month drop since the index fell 2.3 percent for the year ended in August 2016. The decrease over the past 12 months was led by lower prices for nonagricultural industrial supplies and materials.

Nonagricultural Industrial Supplies and Materials: The price index for nonagricultural industrial supplies and materials declined 3.1 percent in June following a 0.6-percent drop the previous month. In June, the decrease was led by a 7.7-percent drop in export fuel prices, the largest monthly decline in fuel prices since the index fell 8.4 percent in December 2018.

Finished Goods: Finished goods prices were mostly up in June. Capital goods prices rose 0.2 percent in June and have not recorded a monthly decline since the index edged down 0.1 percent in October 2018. Prices for consumer goods ticked up 0.1 percent, after falling 0.1 percent in May. The price index for export automotive vehicles prices recorded no change in June.

Measures of Import and Export Prices by Locality
Imports by Locality of Origin: Prices for imports from China edged down 0.1 percent for the second consecutive month in June. Import prices from China have not recorded a monthly advance since the index rose 0.1 percent in May 2018. The price index for imports from China decreased 1.5 percent over the past year, the largest 12-month decline since the index fell 1.6 percent for the year ended February 2017. Prices for imports from Japan recorded no change in June following a 0.1-percent rise the previous month. Import prices from Japan advanced 0.2 percent for the year ended in June. The price indexes for imports from Canada and Mexico both declined in June led by lower fuel prices. Prices for imports from Canada fell 2.7 percent and import prices from Mexico decreased 1.3 percent. Prices for imports from the European Union also declined in June, falling 0.4 percent.

Exports by Locality of Destination: Export prices to China declined 0.5 percent in June, after falling 1.5 percent in May. Prices for exports to China fell 4.4 percent from June 2018 to June 2019. The price index for exports to Japan declined 0.3 percent in June following a 1.0 percent drop the previous month. Export prices to Japan decreased 2.2 percent over the past 12 months. Prices for exports to Canada fell for the third consecutive month, declining 0.6 percent in June, after a 0.4-percent drop in May and a 0.8-percent decrease in April. The price index for exports to Mexico fell 1.2 percent in June following a 0.1-percent drop in May. The June decline was the largest monthly decrease since the index fell 1.3 percent in January. Export prices to the European Union decreased 0.7 percent in June, the largest monthly drop since the index was first published in December 2017.

Terms of Trade Indexes: Terms of Trade indexes are based on country, region, or grouping and measure the change in the purchasing power of exports relative to imports. U.S. terms of trade with China fell 0.4 percent in June, after decreasing 1.4 percent the previous month. The index for U.S. terms of trade with China also fell over the past 12 months, decreasing 2.9 percent. U.S. terms of trade with Japan declined 0.3 percent in June following a 1.1-percent decrease in May. U.S. terms of trade with Japan declined 2.3 percent for the year ended in June. The index for U.S terms of trade with the European Union decreased 0.3 percent in June and rose 1.1 percent over the past 12 months. In contrast, the U.S. terms of trade with Canada rose 2.2 percent in June, after falling 0.6 percent in May. U.S. terms of trade with Canada fell 3.0 percent over the past year. The U.S. terms of trade with Mexico ticked up 0.1 percent in June and fell 1.2 percent from June 2018 to June 2019.

Import and Export Services
Imports: Import air passenger fares increased 6.7 percent in June, after advancing 6.9 percent in May. A 7.3-percent advance in European fares and a 9.7-percent rise in Asian fares were the primary contributors to the June increase in overall air passenger fares. The index for import air passenger fares fell 2.5 percent over the past 12 months despite the June and May advances. Import air freight prices declined 0.2 percent in June and 7.3 percent from June 2018 to June 2019.

Exports: Export air passenger fares rose 4.0 percent following a 0.7-percent increase the previous month. The June advance was the largest monthly rise since a 7.0-percent increase in January, and was led by higher Asian, European, and Latin American/Caribbean fares. Despite the recent advances, export air passenger fares declined 3.0 percent for the year ended in June. Prices for export air freight fell 0.5 percent in June, the largest monthly decline since the index decreased 6.2 percent in December 2017. Export air freight prices increased 0.7 percent over the past year.




Posted: July 16, 2019 Tuesday 08:30 AM




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