Index of Commodity Prices September 2015

Preliminary estimates for September indicate that the index fell by 1.0 per cent (on a monthly average basis) in SDR terms, after falling by 2.8 per cent in August (revised). Declines in coal and lamb prices more than offset an increase in the iron ore price. The base metals subindex was little changed in the month, while the rural commodities subindex fell. In Australian dollar terms, the index rose by 2.7 per cent in September.

Over the past year, the index has fallen by 21.3 per cent in SDR terms, led by declines in the prices of bulk commodities. The index has fallen by 5.3 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 fell by 1.1 per cent in September in SDR terms, to be 20.6 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’ (April 2015).