U.S. online prices dropped 1.7% in March from a year earlier. That marks the seventh-straight decline and the sharpest retreat in four months.
More than half of the 18 categories tracked in the Adobe Digital Price Index showed annual price declines, data released April 10 showed. Compared to the prior month, U.S. online prices were flat in March.
The figures underscore a more competitive selling environment for online merchants in recent months, with prices being adjusted accordingly. The data bolster a Federal Reserve model that suggests inflation persistence eased early this year.
The largest year-over-year price declines in March reflected steep drops in discretionary categories, suggesting consumers are being more cautious and spending more on services.
Prices slid 24.3% from March 2022 for flowers and related gifts, 12.9% for electronics and 6.6% for toys. U.S. online prices of both appliances and home and garden products fell 4.9%.
Meanwhile, grocery prices remain a tough spot for household budgets. While price gains have moderated over the past six months, they were up 10.3% in March from a year ago. U.S. online grocery prices track the food category in the government’s consumer price index.
The Adobe gauge analyzes one trillion visits to retail sites and more than 100 million items across 18 product categories to track price changes. More than 85% of the top 100 U.S. Internet retailers are tracked by Adobe.
Adobe’s Digital Price Index, powered by Adobe Analytics, analyzes 1 trillion visits to retail sites and over 100 million SKUs across 18 product categories:
- Flowers/related gifts
- Medical equipment/supplies
- Non-prescription drugs
- Office supplies
- Personal care products
- Pet products
- Sporting goods
- Tools/home improvement
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