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.
If your denim can stretch that’s great, but it’s going to have to do more than that to attract today’s choosy consumer.Read more
Nobody wants to do business with a store that may soon be out of business.Read more
Jeff Gennette is the new CEO of and president Macy's, plus Citi Trends announces changes to its executive fleet.Read more
PVH is stepping up its supply chain efforts with a new alliance.Read more
Now that we’re well beyond the simpler times of fewer consumer demands and less competition, there are certain necessary investments retailers need to make.Read more
Macy’s board of directors voted to appoint Jeff Gennette CEO of the retail giant yesterday.Read more
America’s apparel market is debunking the department store demise.Read more