U.S. import prices rise 0.3% in September


The cost of imported goods rose in September at the smallest pace in five months.


federico parra/Agence France-Presse/Getty Images

The numbers: U.S. import prices rose 0.3% in September to mark the smallest gain in five months, signaling that a rebound in inflation over the summer could be petering out.

Excluding fuel, prices of imported goods climbed 0.6%, the government said Thursday.

U.S. export prices increased 0.6% in September.

What happened: The cost of oil fell 2.9% last month, reflecting the first decline since April.

Yet the cost of food, autos, consumer goods and most industrial supplies increased in September, though generally at a more modest pace compared to the summer.

Even after the recent increases, however, import prices are still 1.1% lower compared to a year earlier.

If fuel is omitted, import prices have risen a mild 1.5% over the past year.

Big picture: Prices of most goods and services sank in the early stages of the coronavirus pandemic as the world economy faltered and the global trading system suffered a massive disruption.

Prices are unlikely to full recover, economists say, until the pandemic fades and the global economy regains its health.

Read: U.S. jobless claims climb 53,000 to 7-week high of 898,000

Market reaction: The Dow Jones Industrial Average
DJIA,
-0.54%
and S&P 500
SPX,
-0.69%
fell in Thursday trades.



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