Inflation Eases but Material Prices Remain Up over Last Year

June 1st, 2023 by Editor

After the Federal Reserve issued its tenth consecutive rate hike in an ongoing struggle against inflation, the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics’ (BLS) latest Producer Price Index (PPI) showed prices for materials used in door and window manufacturing remained up, on average, by 10% over last year. The annual inflation rate in the U.S. fell to 4.9% in April, marking its lowest point since April 2021. Meanwhile, changes in material prices remained relatively flat March to April 2023.

In April, the monthly PPI for flat glass in the commodity category dropped by 0.1% from the previous month but was up 9.3% compared to the previous year. According to BLS, the commodity classification “organizes products and services by similarity or material composition, regardless of the industry classification of the producing establishment.”

The index for flat glass manufacturing in the industry classification leveled out from March and also saw an increase of 9.8% over the April 2022 report. The industry classification measures “changes in prices received for the industry’s output sold outside the industry (that is, its net output).”

The PPI for metal windows flat-lined as well from March to April, but remains up 7.1% on a year-over-year basis. Prices for metal doors and frames was the first increase on the list for the door and window industry improving just 0.8% from March to April and 4.6% since last year. April’s prices for wood windows showed no change from the previous month but clocked in at a 15.5% increase on a year-over-year basis. Prices for wood doors for interior and exterior applications, on the other hand, dropped 2.6% from March, but it didn’t seem to hurt the long-term results, with prices still up 10.2% over April 2022 pricing.

The price for thermoplastic resins and plastic materials went in the opposite direction of other prices on this report, up 3% over March, but down 10.6% from April of last year. Prices for fiberglass plastic products were up in both areas, increasing by 0.1% from the previous month and increasing 15.5% over the previous April.

The cost of builders’ hardware, which includes hardware used in doors and windows, held steady from March to April, and rose by 4.5% from April 2022.

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