U.S. Import Prices Decline 0.3% In March, Reflect Strong Dollar

The prices the U.S. paid for imported goods fell in March, reflecting in part a stronger dollar that makes foreign goods cheaper. The import price index declined by a seasonally adjusted 0.3% last month, higher than the 0.2% increase expected by economists surveyed by MarketWatch. Excluding fuel, import prices dropped 0.4% last month, the U.S. goverment said Friday. The price of U.S.-made goods exported to other nations edged up 0.1% in March. For the past 12 months import prices have dropped 10.5%, mainly because of sharply lower oil costs. Import prices are down 1.9% excluding fuel during the same span. That's the biggest year-over-year drop since fall 2009.

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