A Islamic Republic of Iran Shipping Lines (IRISL Group) container is seen on the German-owned cargo vessel "Smaragd" at Malta Freeport in the Port of Marsaxlokk outside Valletta February 10, 2012. The IRISL ships and containers are key parts in an international cat-and-mouse game: Iran's attempt to evade the trade sanctions tightening around it. Washington and European capitals want to stop or slow Iran's nuclear programme. They believe that IRISL, which moves nearly a third of Iran's exports and imports and is central to the country's trade, plays a critical role in evading sanctions against shipping controlled weapons, missiles and nuclear technology to and from Iran.  Picture taken February 10, 2012. To match Special Report IRAN/SMUGGLING   REUTERS/Darrin Zammit Lupi (MALTA - Tags: POLITICS TRANSPORT MARITIME ENERGY)

A Islamic Republic of Iran Shipping Lines (IRISL Group) container is seen on the German-owned cargo vessel "Smaragd" at Malta Freeport in the Port of Marsaxlokk outside Valletta February 10, 2012. The IRISL ships and containers are key parts in an ... international cat-and-mouse game: Iran's attempt to evade the trade sanctions tightening around it. Washington and European capitals want to stop or slow Iran's nuclear programme. They believe that IRISL, which moves nearly a third of Iran's exports and imports and is central to the country's trade, plays a critical role in evading sanctions against shipping controlled weapons, missiles and nuclear technology to and from Iran. Picture taken February 10, 2012. To match Special Report IRAN/SMUGGLING REUTERS/Darrin Zammit Lupi (MALTA - Tags: POLITICS TRANSPORT MARITIME ENERGY)

Import Prices Increase More Than Expected in February

Politics Reuters

U.S. import prices rose more than expected in February, driven by the biggest increase in fuel prices since August, a U.S. Labor Department report showed on Wednesday.

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Overall import prices rose 1.1%, also the highest since August and more than double the consensus forecast of 0.5% in a Reuters poll.

Fuel import prices rose 4.9% in February, led by a 5.2% increase in petroleum prices. Non-fuel import prices were unchanged from the prior month.

Export prices rose 0.8% in February, the largest monthly gain since September. Higher corn and soybeans prices fueled the increases, along with higher prices for industrial goods and materials, capital goods and autos.