U.S. Import and Export Price Indexes summary

Transmission of material in this release is embargoed until                                      USDL-18-1314
8:30 a.m. (EDT) Tuesday, August 14, 2018

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                                U.S. IMPORT AND EXPORT PRICE INDEXES - JULY 2018                                

Prices for U.S. imports recorded no change in July, the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics reported today, after 
edging down 0.1 percent in June. Falling nonfuel prices in July offset higher fuel prices. U.S. export prices 
decreased 0.5 percent in July following a 0.2-percent increase in June. The July decline was driven by a 
drop in agricultural export prices. 

Imports

All Imports: Import prices recorded no change in July, after falling 0.1 percent in June and rising 0.9 
percent in May. U.S. import prices increased 4.8 percent for the year ended in July, the largest 12-month 
advance since the index rose 5.1 percent in February 2012. Import prices have not fallen on an over-the-year 
basis since the index fell 0.2 percent in October 2016.

Fuel Imports: Prices for import fuel advanced 1.6 percent in July following a 1.3-percent increase in June 
and a 6.5-percent rise in May. In July, increasing prices for petroleum and natural gas contributed to the rise 
in fuel prices. Petroleum prices advanced 0.9 percent in July, after rising 1.4 percent in June and 7.8 percent 
in May. Prices for natural gas increased 36.7 percent in July, the first monthly advance since January and 
the largest since the index rose 43.2 percent in November 2006. The price index for fuels increased 40.7 
percent between July 2017 and July 2018, the largest over-the-year advance since the index rose 50.9 
percent in March 2017. The 12-month rise in import fuel prices was led by a 43.6-percent advance in 
petroleum prices which more than offset a 0.5-percent decline in natural gas prices. 

All Imports Excluding Fuel: Nonfuel import prices fell 0.3 percent for the second consecutive month in 
July. Lower prices in July for nonfuel industrial supplies and materials; foods, feeds, and beverages; and 
capital goods led the decline which more than offset rising prices for consumer goods. Automotive vehicles 
prices recorded no change. Despite the recent declines, nonfuel import prices rose 1.3 percent for the year 
ended in July. The 12-month advance was largely driven by higher nonfuel industrial supplies and materials 
prices although prices for consumer goods, capital goods, and automotive vehicles also increased over the 
past year.

Table A. Percent change in Import and Export Price Indexes, selected categories

Month IMPORTS EXPORTS
All
imports
Fuel
imports
Nonfuel
imports
All
exports
Agri-
cultural
exports
Non-
agricultural
exports

2017

July

-0.2 -1.0 -0.1 0.5 1.8 0.3

August

0.6 4.0 0.3 0.6 0.0 0.7

September

0.8 5.7 0.3 0.8 -0.7 0.9

October

0.2 0.3 0.1 0.1 2.0 -0.1

November

1.0 9.8 0.0 0.5 -0.7 0.7

December

0.2 3.3 -0.2 0.1 -0.3 0.0

2018

January

0.8 3.3 0.5 0.7 0.0 0.8

February

0.2 -1.8 0.4 0.2 0.6 0.2

March

-0.2 -2.6 0.1 0.4 3.2 0.1

April

0.5 (r)4.0 0.1 0.5 -1.1 0.7

May

0.9 (r)6.5 0.2 (r)0.7 1.6 0.6

June

(r)-0.1 (r)1.3 -0.3 (r)0.2 -1.0 0.4

July

0.0 1.6 -0.3 -0.5 -5.3 0.0

July 2016 to 2017

1.2 6.3 0.7 0.9 -1.8 1.1

July 2017 to 2018

4.8 40.7 1.3 4.3 -2.0 5.0

Footnotes
(r) Revised

Exports

All Exports: U.S. export prices declined 0.5 percent in July following a 0.2-percent rise in June and a 0.7-
percent advance in May. The July drop was the first monthly decrease since June 2017 and the largest since 
the index fell 0.6 percent in May 2017. Lower prices for agricultural exports drove the decline in July. 
Overall export prices advanced 4.3 percent between July 2017 and July 2018.

Agricultural Exports: Prices for agricultural exports fell 5.3 percent in July, after decreasing 1.0 percent in 
June and rising 1.6 percent in May. The fall in July was the largest monthly decline since the index 
decreased 6.5 percent in October 2011. A 14.1-percent drop in soybean prices was the primary contributor 
to the decline in agricultural prices; export prices for corn, wheat, fruits, and nuts also decreased in July. 
Agricultural export prices decreased 2.0 percent over the past year, the first 12-month drop since the index 
fell 1.8 percent in July 2017.   

All Exports Excluding Agriculture: Nonagricultural export prices recorded no change in July following a 
0.4-percent rise in June and a 0.6-percent advance in May. Falling prices for nonagricultural industrial 
supplies and materials and automotive vehicles were offset by rising prices for nonagricultural foods in July. 
Export capital goods and consumer goods recorded no change. Overall nonagricultural prices increased 5.0 
percent over the past 12 months.

                                            SELECTED JULY HIGHLIGHTS                                            

Import Prices

Imports by Locality of Origin: Prices for imports from China decreased 0.2 percent in July, following a 
0.1-percent uptick in June. The July drop was the first monthly decline since the index fell 0.3 percent in 
September 2017. Despite the fall, import prices from China rose 0.2 percent between July 2017 and July 
2018. In contrast, import prices from Japan rose 0.3 percent in July, the largest monthly advance since the 
index increased 0.5 percent in January. Prices for imports from Japan rose 0.7 percent for the year ended in 
July, the largest 12-month increase since the index advanced 1.0 percent in June 2017. Prices for imports 
from Canada ticked up 0.1 percent in July, and the price indexes for imports from Mexico and the European 
Union fell 0.5 percent and 0.1 percent, respectively.  

Nonfuel Industrial Supplies and Materials: Prices for nonfuel industrial supplies and materials declined 
1.0 percent in July, after increasing 0.2 percent in June and 0.8 percent in May. Lower prices for copper, 
gold, and lumber drove the drop in July.
	
Finished Goods: Import prices for major finished goods were mixed in July. Consumer goods prices 
advanced 0.3 percent, the largest monthly increase since the index rose 0.5 percent in February. A 1.7-
percent advance in medicinal, dental, and pharmaceutical materials drove the increase. The price index for 
capital goods edged down 0.1 percent for the third consecutive month in July. Prices for automotive vehicles 
recorded no change.   

Foods, Feeds, and Beverages: Prices for foods, feeds, and beverages declined 1.8 percent in July following 
a 2.6-percent drop in June. The July decrease was primarily driven by lower prices for fruit.

Transportation Services: Import air passenger fares declined 5.8 percent in July following a 7.3-percent 
rise in June and a 2.5-percent fall in May. An 8.5-percent drop in European fares and a 7.9-percent decrease 
in Asian fares more than offset a 2.3-percent increase in Latin American/Caribbean fares. The import air 
passenger fares price index rose 1.5 percent for the year ended in July. Import air freight prices decreased 
2.3 percent in July and advanced 3.7 percent over the past 12 months.

Export Prices

Nonagricultural Industrial Supplies and Materials: Nonagricultural industrial supplies and materials 
prices fell 0.2 percent in July, after a 1.2-percent rise in June. Lower prices for gold, aluminum, and copper 
drove the July decline.

Finished Goods: Export prices for finished goods were mixed in July. Automotive vehicles prices edged 
down 0.1 percent for the second consecutive month. The price indexes for capital goods and consumer 
goods recorded no change in July.

Transportation Services: The price index for export air passenger fares increased 1.6 percent in July, after 
rising 5.0 percent in June and falling 0.7 percent in May. The July advance was driven by higher Asian, 
Latin American/Caribbean, and European fares. Despite the July increase, overall export air passenger fares 
decreased 1.8 percent over the past 12 months. Export air freight prices fell 0.2 percent in July, after 
recording no change in June. Prices for export air freight rose 3.7 percent over the past year.
		
Import and Export Price Index data for August are scheduled for release on Friday, September 14, 2018 at 
8:30 a.m. (EDT).


New Locality of Destination and Terms of Trade Data 

Beginning with the August news release on September 14, the BLS will introduce two new data series. 
Locality of Destination price indexes will measure export prices based on the country or region where items 
are exported. Terms of Trade indexes are based on the country or region and measure the relative price for 
imports in terms of export prices and are defined as the all-export price index divided by the respective all-
import price index. For more information on Terms of Trade indexes, please see "U.S. Import and Export 
Prices and the Terms of Trade" at www.bls.gov/opub/btn/archive/us-import-and-export-price-indexes-and-
the-terms-of-trade.pdf. 

The Locality of Destination price indexes will be published at the all-export level and also include a 
breakdown by manufacturing industries and nonmanufacturing industries where possible. The countries and 
regions for which indexes will be published include the Industrialized Countries, the European Union, Latin 
America, the Pacific Rim, Canada, China, Germany, Japan, and Mexico. Indexes by manufacturing 
industries and nonmanufacturing industries will be available for all countries and regions except Canada and 
Germany. 

Terms of Trade indexes will be available for all countries and regions where both the import Locality of 
Origin price index and the export Locality of Destination price index are published. These include the 
Industrialized Countries, the European Union, Latin America, the Pacific Rim, Canada, China, Germany, 
Japan, and Mexico.

The data series for both the Locality of Destination price indexes and the Terms of Trade indexes will begin 
in December 2017 when the indexes are first published on September 14.

In addition to the new indexes, the numbering of the tables in the Import and Export Price Index news 
release will be changing. Tables 1 through 7 will remain the same, and the new Locality of Destination data 
will be in table 8 and the new Terms of Trade data will be in table 9. The current table for Selected 
Transportation Services will change from table 8 to table 10. Other formatting changes to the text of the 
news release will be made. For examples of the new tables for the Locality of Destination export price 
indexes and the Terms of Trade indexes, please use the links below:

Table 8. U.S. export price indexes and percent changes by locality of destination 
www.bls.gov/mxp/locality-of-destination-example.pdf

Table 9. U.S. terms of trade indexes and percent changes by locality 
www.bls.gov/mxp/terms-of-trade-example.pdf


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Last Modified Date: August 14, 2018