WASHINGTON — The sagging U.S. economy got some deflating news on Tuesday.
Prices for all U.S.-produced goods fell a seasonally adjusted 2.8 percent in October, the largest monthly decline since records started being kept in 1947, driven mostly by precipitous drops in energy costs, according to the Labor Department Producer Price Index. Prices dropped 0.4 percent in September and slid 0.9 percent in August. Prices in the core index, which excludes the more volatile food and energy sectors, rose 0.4 percent in October.
Wholesale prices for domestically manufactured women’s and girl’s apparel were flat in October from the previous month and declined 0.1 percent from a year earlier. Prices for all apparel were also flat last month compared with September and increased 0.9 percent versus October 2007.
The PPI is not a key indicator for apparel pricing, however, since the vast majority of the clothing sold in the U.S. is imported. The Consumer Price Index, which tracks retail prices of all goods, will be released today.
As the economy struggles, inflationary concerns have been replaced with fears of deflation, in which falling prices and demand can spiral out of control.
“Inflation is yesterday’s problem,” said Nigel Gault, chief U.S. economist at IHS Global Insight. “It is remarkable that in just a few months fears have switched from inflation to deflation, a testament to how suddenly the global economy’s expansion has turned into recession.”
Producer prices for women’s and girls’ dresses, suits and pantsuits, and jeans and slacks were flat in October compared with September. In year-over-year comparisons, producer prices of dresses increased 1.5 percent, suits and pantsuits dropped 1.9 percent, and jeans and slacks fell 1.1 percent.
Wholesale prices for woven shirts and blouses increased 0.1 percent in October from the previous month, and were up 3.8 percent in 12-month comparisons. Producer prices for women’s and girls’ tailored jackets and vests advanced 0.2 percent in month-to-month comparisons and were up 1 percent for the year. Knit shirts and blouses increased 0.1 percent in October, but declined 0.3 percent from the previous year.
Prices for apparel fabric, also called textile mill products, dropped 0.2 percent in October compared to September and rose 5.5 percent from the same period a year ago. Home furnishing textile prices, or textile product mills, increased 0.3 percent in October and 3.5 percent year-over-year.
Deeper in the product pipeline, prices are starting to come down. Synthetic fiber prices fell 4.1 percent in a month-to-month comparison, but were up 3.2 percent from October 2007. Yarn prices slid 0.2 percent in the month, but were up 8.3 percent for the year. Finished fabric prices dropped 0.4 percent in October and increased 5.4 percent year-to-year. Greige fabric costs were flat in October compared with September and rose 3 percent from October 2007.
@kith is moving into children’s. The men’s and women’s streetwear brand has launched Kidset, a Kith kids line located in New York at 64 Bleecker Street. The line includes mini versions of staple Kith pieces like the Astor bomber jacket and the Kith box logo sweatshirts, along with a wall that can display up to 120 pairs of shoes from @adidas, @newbalance, @timberland and more. #wwdfashion
“I just wanted to create this fully rounded character, but I do think what excited me most was just the opportunity to give a group of people representation that I feel needs it. I like to do characters in projects that stand for something and Karolina definitely does, so that was really exciting to me,” @ginnygardner says of her new role in @hulu’s “The Runaways.” Gardner plays Karolina Dean, a queer superhero, which is a rarity for @marvel. Read more about Gardner’s character on WWD.com #wwdeye (📷: @dandoperalski)
@heriethpaul and @gracebol have a moment on the @victoriassecret fashion show 2017. See every look from the runway on WWD.com. Link in bio. (📷: @giovanni_giannoni_photo) #wwdfashion #victoriassecret #VSFashionShow
“Azzedine has been one of the biggest influences in my life. He has always been such a strong, loving, fatherly figure to me. I call him Papa. His designs are indescribably unique, they are pieces of art. He knew how to make the female form look its loveliest. I have so many memories of him; my favorite might be during my first show with him in Paris. He liked me and he wanted to help me get more work. He called all his friends at Kenzo and Comme des Garcons, and asked them to book me. They said, ‘But she can’t walk!’ And he said, ‘but she has such a great ass!' His friendship and support has been the great privilege of my career. I can't imagine life without him. Repose en paix mon Papa.” - @stephanieseymour tells @wwd. #wwdfashion (📷: @steveeichner) #alaia #azzedinealaia
Azzedine Alaïa, flanked by two of his closest friends, models Stephanie Seymour and Naomi Campbell.
He designed Seymour’s dress for her 1995 wedding to Peter Brant, and treated Campbell (who famously called him Papa), like a daughter. For more on the legendary designer, tap the link in bio. #wwdfashion #alaia #azzedinealaia