In August 2017, the prices of imported raw materials recoveredPrices of oil and raw material imports - August 2017

In August 2017, the price of crude oil in euros speeded up (+3.0% after +0.6%). The prices in euros of all other imported commodities picked up (+2.6%), after a five-month decrease. The prices of industrial raw materials increased more than in July (+5.8% after +0.9%). In contrast, the prices of raw food materials decreased again (−3.3% after −2.1%).

Informations rapides
No 248
Paru le : 20/09/2017
Prochaine parution le : 24/05/2018 at 12:00 - April 2018

In August 2017, the price of crude oil in euros speeded up (+3.0% after +0.6%). The prices in euros of all other imported commodities picked up (+2.6%), after a five-month decrease. The prices of industrial raw materials increased more than in July (+5.8% after +0.9%). In contrast, the prices of raw food materials decreased again (−3.3% after −2.1%).

Oil price kept recovering

In August 2017, the price of North Sea crude oil (Brent) in euros recovered clearly (+3.0% after +0.6% in July) to an average of €43.5 per barrel. In dollars, the increase was more marked (+5.6% after +3.2%) because the euro appreciated during the month.

Graph1 – Oil (Brent)

  • Source : INSEE

Table1 – Oil and petroleum products

in euros
Oil and petroleum products
Prices Change (%)
of last month over the last month over the last 3 months over the last 12 months
Brent in $ per barrel 51.4 5.6 1.0 11.3
Brent in € per barrel 43.5 3.0 –5.4 5.7
Gasoline €/L 0.386 6.6 4.1 18.6
Gas Oil 408.2 3.8 –0.7 12.2
Heavy fuel 288.9 0.9 –3.1 17.5
Naphtha 388.6 7.3 –0.9 20.5
  • Prices are in euros per tonne unless otherwise specified
  • Source : INSEE

Industrial commodity prices increased sharply

In August 2017, the prices in euros of industrial raw materials rose sharply (+5.8% after +0.9%). This increase was mainly due to theprices of minerals, (+7.6% after +1.8%), particularly iron ore (+12.1% after +14.1%). The prices of non-ferrous metals bounced back (+6.8%) after a five-month decline, especially the price of nickel (+14.5% after −8.2%), as a consequence of an expected shortage following numerous mine closures worldwide. The prices of precious metals bounced back too (+4.5% after −5.6%). The prices of agro-industrial raw materials declined again, but less than in the previous month (−1.2% after −2.5%). Notably, the price of tropical wood declined less than in July (−0.4% after −1.8%), as those of hides (−3.6% after −8.6%). The price of wood pulp was virtually stable (−0.1% after −2.8%). However, the price of natural rubber fell back (−0.5% after +2.6%), and the price of natural fibres decreased more strongly (−5.0% after −3.9%).

Food commodity prices decreased againsharply than in June

In euros, the prices of raw food materials decreased again (−3.3% after −2.1%) and reached their lower level since December 2013. The prices of all foodstuffs fell. The decrease in cereals prices became sharper (−5.9% after −1.8%). The prices of tropical foodstuffs declined again, but less than in July (−0.5% after −2.2%), as those of beef meat (−8.0% after −11.7%). The prices of oil seeds and vegetable oils slipped back (−1.9% after +1.8%), as well as those of sugar (−6.3% after +1.0%).

Table2 – Imported raw materials (excluding energy) in euros

base 100 in 2000
Imported raw materials (excluding energy) in euros
Index Changes (%)
of last month over the last month over the last 3 months over the last 12 months
Food total 182.8 –3.3 –9.6 –14.0
Tropical foodstuffs 160.1 –0.5 –6.8 –24.1
Oil seeds, vegetable oils 214.7 –1.9 –5.5 –8.6
Cereals 149.2 –5.9 –4.5 0.0
Sugar 125.8 –6.3 –20.8 –37.1
Beef meat 130.0 –8.0 –22.2 –9.2
Industrial raw materials 174.9 5.8 2.2 12.6
Agricultural raw materials 119.6 –1.2 –7.4 3.5
Natural Fibres 132.1 –5.0 –14.1 –3.2
Natural rubber 141.7 –0.5 –6.0 4.2
Hides 60.0 –3.6 –15.6 –20.5
Wood pulp 102.3 –0.1 –2.6 4.1
Tropical wood 91.6 –0.4 –6.1 –6.1
Sawn softwood 110.0 –2.4 –13.0 4.9
Minerals 203.9 7.6 4.9 15.0
Iron ore 482.2 12.1 16.4 20.7
Non-ferrous metals 166.1 6.8 2.9 15.9
Precious metals 237.8 4.5 –2.6 –8.6
All commodities 173.8 2.6 –2.0 2.2
  • Source : INSEE

Graph3 – Food

  • Source : INSEE

Graph2 – Imported raw materials (excluding energy)

  • Source : INSEE

Graph4 – Industrial raw materials

  • Source : INSEE