The Labor Department reported on Friday the import-price index, measuring the cost of goods ranging from Canadian oil to Chinese electronics, was unchanged m-o-m in January, following a revised 0.2 percent m-o-m gain in December (originally a 0.3 percent m-o-m advance). Economists had expected prices to drop 0.2 percent m-o-m last month.
According to the report, in January, falling fuel prices (-2.2 percent m-o-m) offset increasing prices for nonfuel imports (+0.2 percent m-o-m).
Over the 12-month period ended in January, import prices rose 0.3 percent, helped by a jump in fuel prices (+11.3 percent), which more than offset a drop in nonfuel prices (-0.9 percent).
Meanwhile, the price index for U.S. exports surged 0.7 percent m-o-m in January, following an unrevised 0.2 percent m-o-m decrease in the previous month. That was the largest monthly advance since March 2019.
Rising prices for both agricultural (+2.0 percent m-o-m) and nonagricultural (+0.7 percent m-o-m) exports contributed to the January climb.
Over the past 12 months, the price index for exports increased 0.5 percent, boosted by gains in prices for both agricultural (+3.1 percent) and nonagricultural (+0.2 percent) exports. That was the first 12-month rise in the index since April 2019.
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