U.S. apparel imports continued to soar in August, reaching a record high for the second straight month and topping $10 billion for the first time ever, according to Commerce Department data released last week.
Total apparel imports rose by 8.7% over August 2014, to $10.1 billion on a CIF basis.
With retail apparel sales growing at between 1 and 2 percent this year, the data are evidence that imports continue to gain share from domestically-produced apparel despite the prevailing folklore that U.S.-made clothing is a growing trend.
The apparel import increase contrasted sharply with total U.S. imports in the month, which fell by 3.1% to $192 billion despite the purchasing power of the stronger U.S. dollar.
On a 12-month smoothed basis, which corrects for volatility of data in a particular month, apparel import growth was 5.6% in August, its biggest monthly jump in almost four years.
China, Vietnam, Bangladesh, Indonesia and India are the top five sources of U.S. imported apparel so far this year.
Apparel exports outperformed the total export market as well, falling by 7.5% compared to last August, to $522 million, while total U.S. exports of goods and services plunged by 10.5%. On a 12-month smoothed basis, apparel exports increased by 2 percent, their smallest monthly increase in almost two years.
LevaData is tapping the power of AI to make strategic sourcing and procurement more seamless for apparel industry members.Read more
Samples, it seems, may soon end up on the endangered list if 3D modeling technology continues to improve and provides the industry with a way to cut down production timelines.Read more
Abercrombie & Fitch continues to rely on Hollister gains, while positioning the Abercrombie brand for similar success. Gap sales up on Athleta, Old Navy performance.Read more
The domestic textile industry and apparel importers have often been on opposite sides of U.S. trade issues, but in today’s political climate they seem to have found some common ground.Read more
U.S. employers added 261,000 jobs in October, pushing unemployment down to the lowest rate since the halcyon days of late 2000.Read more
While everyone’s been focused on the "retail apocalypse," the real story to emerge from 2017 might be the strange bedfellows that have emerged as everyone tries to plot a course forward. The recent partnership between Walmart and Lord & Taylor is the latest to get people talking.Read more
J.W. Anderson’s chief executive, Simon Whitehouse, is exiting the company, plus Dick's Sporting Goods tapped Paul Gaffney as its new CTO.Read more