Another decline in import and export prices will likely have the Fed pulling its hair out. A pair of charts will explain why.

West Texas Intermediate Crude Price

Crude is in a bear market, down about 22% since the December high. Price is lower in four consecutive months and five out of the last six.

On June 15, I reported Import Prices Dip, Export Prices Plunge.

Let’s explore the import/export price relationship to crude.

Import and Export Price Indexes vs. Crude

Don’t be confused by the Fred titles that say “all commodities”.

The BLS says Import/Export Price Indexes contain “data on changes in the prices of nonmilitary goods and services traded between the U.S. and the rest of the world.”

Popular Reasons Not to Worry

  1. It’s transitory
  2. Kudlow says “Lower oil prices are unambiguously good for US economy”
  3. What people don’t spend on gasoline, they will spend elsewhere
  4. We have plenty of inflation elsewhere
  5. More QE baby! Bring it on!
  6. All of the above

Mike “Mish” Shedlock