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U.S. Import Prices Rise 0.3% In September, In Line With Estimates

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A report released by the Labor Department on Thursday showed import prices in the U.S. increased in line with economist estimates in the month of September.

The Labor Department said import prices rose by 0.3 percent in September after jumping by an upwardly revised 1.0 percent in August.

Economists had expected import prices to rise by 0.3 percent compared to the 0.9 percent increase originally reported for the previous month.

The uptick in import prices came despite a sharp pullback in prices for fuel imports, which tumbled by 2.9 percent in September after surging up by 3.9 percent in August.

Prices for non-fuel imports advanced by 0.6 percent in September after climbing by 0.7 percent in August, with the continued increase primarily driven by higher prices for non-fuel industrial supplies and materials.

The report also said export prices climbed by 0.6 percent following the 0.5 percent advance seen in August. Export prices were expected to increase by 0.4 percent.

The stronger than expected export price growth came as prices for agricultural exports jumped by 2.7 percent in September after slumping by 2.3 percent in August.

Higher prices for soybeans, corn, fruit, cotton, wheat, nuts, and meat more than offset lower prices for dairy products and egg, leading to the biggest increase in prices for agricultural exports since December 2018.

Prices for non-agricultural exports also rose by 0.3 percent in September after climbing by 0.8 percent in the previous month.

Despite another monthly increase, import prices in September were down by 1.1 percent compared to the same month a year ago. Export prices were down by 1.8 percent year-over-year.

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