Haver Analytics
Haver Analytics
| Feb 09 2024

FIBER: Industrial Commodity Prices Rise Further in Latest Four Weeks

  • Crude oil prices improve.
  • Textile costs strengthen.
  • Rubber prices jump.

The Industrial Materials Price Index from the Foundation for International Business and Economic Research (FIBER) rose 1.5% (-3.9% y/y) during the four weeks ended February 9, 2024, adding to increases since a price low in the third week of December. The index remained 22.0% below the cycle peak in the second week of March 2022.

Prices in the crude oil & benzene group gained 2.9% (1.5% y/y) in the last four weeks. The cost of West Texas Intermediate crude oil rose 2.1% in four weeks to $73.69 per barrel, down 3.3% y/y. The price of the petro-chemical benzene, used for making plastics & synthetic fibers, increased 11.1% (15.1% y/y) in four weeks. Excluding crude oil & benzene, the industrial commodity price index rose 1.5% (-3.9% y/y) in the latest four-week period.

Textile group prices rose 1.9% (1.0% y/y) in the latest four weeks and have been rising since their low in the second week of November. Cotton prices increased 9.8% (1.7% y/y) in the last four weeks while the cost of burlap improved 3.4% (6.8% y/y) in four weeks.

Prices in the miscellaneous group moved 1.4% higher during the last four weeks, but were down 5.7% y/y. Rubber prices surged 18.9%, up 24.5% y/y, but the cost of framing lumber rose eased 2.1% in four weeks (-21.3% y/y).

Metals group prices increased 0.5% (-8.9% y/y) over the most recent four weeks. Tin prices strengthened 3.4% in four weeks but were down 8.8% y/y. Copper scrap prices were little-changed (-7.3% y/y) in the last four weeks. The cost of steel scrap rose 0.1% (-1.6% y/y) while lead prices increased 3.8% (0.7% y/y) in four weeks. Aluminum prices eased 0.4% (-11.5% y/y) and zinc prices weakened 3.4% (-24.9% y/y) in the latest four weeks.

The Foundation for International Business and Economic Research (FIBER) develops economic measurement techniques as applied to business cycles and inflation in the U.S. and other market economies. The commodity price data can be found in Haver's DAILY, WEEKLY, USECON and CMDTY databases.

  • Prior to joining Haver Analytics in 2000, Mr. Moeller worked as the Economist at Chancellor Capital Management from 1985 to 1999. There, he developed comprehensive economic forecasts and interpreted economic data for equity and fixed income portfolio managers. Also at Chancellor, Mr. Moeller worked as an equity analyst and was responsible for researching and rating companies in the economically sensitive automobile and housing industries for investment in Chancellor’s equity portfolio.   Prior to joining Chancellor, Mr. Moeller was an Economist at Citibank from 1979 to 1984.   He also analyzed pricing behavior in the metals industry for the Council on Wage and Price Stability in Washington, D.C.   In 1999, Mr. Moeller received the award for most accurate forecast from the Forecasters' Club of New York. From 1990 to 1992 he was President of the New York Association for Business Economists.   Mr. Moeller earned an M.B.A. in Finance from Fordham University, where he graduated in 1987. He holds a Bachelor of Arts in Economics from George Washington University.

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