Index of Commodity Prices January 2015

Preliminary estimates for January indicate that the index declined by 0.9 per cent (on a monthly average basis) in SDR terms, after falling by 3.4 per cent in December (revised). The largest contributor to the decline in January was the price of oil. The base metals and rural commodities subindices also declined during the month. In Australian dollar terms, the index declined by 1.2 per cent in January.

Over the past year, the index has fallen by 20.4 per cent in SDR terms, largely driven by falls in the prices of bulk commodities. The index has fallen by 19.1 per cent in Australian dollar terms over the past year.

Consistent with previous releases, preliminary estimates for iron ore, coking coal and thermal coal export prices are being used for the most recent months, based on market information. Using spot prices for these commodities, the index declined by 0.4 per cent in January in SDR terms, to be around 20 per cent lower over the past year.

For further details regarding the construction of the index, please refer to ‘Changes to the RBA Index of Commodity Prices: 2013’ in the March 2013 issue of the Bulletin and ‘Weights for the Index of Commodity Prices’ (March 2014).