U.S. Import Prices Rose In February
Prices of goods imported into the U.S. moved up in February, the Labor Department said Thursday.
Import prices rose 0.6% in February from the prior month. Unlike other price measures produced by the government, import prices are not seasonally adjusted. Economists surveyed by The Wall Street Journal had expected a 0.4% increase from January.
From a year earlier, import prices were down 1.3%.
Much of the recent movement in import prices is due to volatile fuel prices, which rose 4.9% in February from the previous month but which are still down 6.5% on the year. Petroleum prices fell 7.9% from a year ago but were partly offset by natural gas prices, which rose 17.5%.
Nonfuel import prices were unchanged in February from January and are down 0.6% over the past year, the largest decline since September 2016.
Import prices reflect costs before tariffs are applied.
Thursday’s report showed export prices rose 0.6% in February, and were up 0.3% from a year earlier.