– US import prices are falling surprisingly sharply
US imports fell 0.8% in October compared to the previous month. This is another indicator of ongoing inflation.
US import prices fell more than expected in October, helping to ease inflationary pressures. The Labor Department said Thursday in Washington that import prices fell by 0.8% compared to September. Economists polled by Reuters had expected a decline of just 0.3%. In September, there was a revised upward increase of 0.4%. Compared to the same month last year, US imports fell by 2% in October. The strength of the dollar against the currencies of the United States’ most important trading partners is reducing import prices.
Since the world’s largest economy imports many intermediate products and raw materials from abroad, import prices also have a lagging effect on general inflation and thus reach consumers. Inflation in the United States has recently begun to decline. Consumer prices rose 3.2% in October, after 3.7% in September.
The US Federal Reserve has raised interest rates from near zero to a range of 5.25 to 5.5% since the beginning of 2022, with the aim of breaking the inflation wave. It aims to achieve an inflation rate of 2%, which is considered ideal for the economy. In futures markets, the probability of a further increase in interest rates was assessed as relatively low given the low inflation pressure. Meanwhile, there has been speculation about interest rate cuts from May 2024.