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Economy in Brief

U.S. Import Prices Edge Lower; Export Prices Remain Unchanged
by Tom Moeller  August 14, 2014

Import prices slipped 0.2% during July (+0.8% y/y) following an unrevised 0.1% uptick in June. The shortfall matched expectations in the Action Economics Forecast Survey. A 1.4% decline (+1.7% y/y) in petroleum prices provided the most downward pressure on overall import costs. That was accompanied by an unchanged level of nonoil prices (0.7% y/y), which followed three consecutive months of decline.

Last month's slip in nonpetroleum import prices reflected a 0.8% decline (-0.9% y/y) in motor vehicle & parts prices. Capital goods prices remained unchanged (-0.1% y/y) and nonauto consumer goods prices ticked 0.1% higher. Nonoil industrial supplies prices gained 0.4% (2.2% y/y) and foods, feeds & beverages prices jumped 1.0% (3.0% y/y).

U.S. export prices held steady in July (+0.4% y/y) after the prior month's 0.4% decline. A 0.1% slip in prices had been expected. Prices for agricultural products fell 2.2% (-2.9% y/y) but nonagricultural prices gained 0.3% (0.9% y/y).

Foods, feeds & beverages export costs led prices lower with a 1.6% decline (-1.7% y/y) and capital goods prices slipped 0.1% (+0.8% y/y). Motor vehicle & parts prices were unchanged (0.5% y/y) while nonauto consumer goods prices improved 0.3% (0.3% y/y).

The import and export price series can be found in Haver's USECON database. Detailed figures are available in the USINT database. The expectations figure from the Action Economics Forecast Survey is in the AS1REPNA database.

Import/Export Prices (NSA, %) Jul Jun May Jul Y/Y 2013 2012 2011
Imports - All Commodities -0.2 0.1 0.3 0.8 -1.1 0.3 10.9
  Petroleum -1.2 1.1 1.9 1.7 -2.6 -0.3 36.5
  Nonpetroleum 0.0 -0.1 -0.2 0.7 -0.6 0.3 4.5
Exports - All Commodities 0.0 -0.4 0.1 0.4 -0.4 0.4 8.1
  Agricultural -2.2 -1.7 0.3 -2.9 1.7 2.4 22.3
  Nonagricultural 0.3 -0.3 0.1 0.9 -0.7 0.1 6.6
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