Import and export prices both edged up for May, according to a Labor Department report (link opens as PDF) released today.
Import prices inched up 0.1% after falling a revised 0.5% in April. Analysts had expected an increase, but their 0.2% estimate proved too high. This latest report puts import prices back on a growth trajectory, which they had kept for five of the last six months. However, April's decline and May's growth were mostly representative of falling and rising fuel prices, respectively. Import fuel prices increased 0.5% for May after falling 2.7% the month before.
On a regional basis, China import prices proved especially noteworthy. China's prices jumped 0.3% for May, the largest month-to-month gain since January 2012, due primarily to a 0.7% increase in computer and electronic product manufacturing prices.
After dropping 1% in April, export prices also edged up 0.1% for May, missing analyst expectations of a 0.2% rise. Exports benefited from both agricultural and non-agricultural price increases, up 0.5% and 0.1%, respectively. The Labor Department noted a 4.6% jump in wheat prices, as well as a 0.1% increase in capital goods prices, as reasons behind May's export price increase.
Try any of our Foolish newsletter services free for 30 days. We Fools may not all hold the same opinions, but we all believe that considering a diverse range of insights makes us better investors. The Motley Fool has a disclosure policy.
More from The Motley Fool
What Will Strong Nerf Sales on Amazon Mean for Hasbro?
Amazon said Hasbro's Nerf N-Strike Elite Strongarm Blaster was the best-selling toy on Amazon over the holidays. That won't necessarily translate to a blockbuster quarter for the toymaker.
Are Strong Sales of Robotic Vacuums on Amazon Good News for iRobot?
Robotic vacuums were among the best-selling home items on Amazon over the holidays. Will that translate into strong results for iRobot?
Will Roku's TV Sales on Amazon Move the Needle?
Roku had two of the top-selling televisions on Amazon over the holidays, but what will that mean for Roku's earnings?