Index of Commodity Prices December 2014

Preliminary estimates for December indicate that the index declined by 3.0 per cent (on a monthly average basis) in SDR terms, after falling by 2.0 per cent in November (revised). The largest contributors to the decline in December were the prices of oil and iron ore. The base metals subindex declined during the month, while the rural commodities subindex increased. In Australian dollar terms, the index increased by 1.1 per cent in December.

Over the past year, the index has fallen by 21.2 per cent in SDR terms, largely driven by falls in the prices of bulk commodities. The index has fallen by 18.6 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 2.0 per cent in December 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).