Cotton Outlook: U.S. Net Textile and Apparel Imports Rise in 2019

Cotton seedlings. ©Debra L Ferguson Stock Photography

U.S. net textile and apparel fiber imports increased for a third consecutive year in calendar 2019, as consumer demand for clothing remained strong. Net imports surpassed 17.6 billion raw-fiber-equivalent pounds in 2019, nearly 2 percent above a year earlier. Total fiber product imports approached 21.0 billion pounds in 2019, compared with more than 20.8 billion pounds in 2018. Meanwhile, textile and apparel exports in 2019 declined 4 percent to 3.3 billion pounds, the lowest in a decade. You can check here for more about the leather patch hats collection.A hat can change your look instantly, and it can be the best accessory to put your outfit together. There are many different types of hats, and every woman can find one to complement her looks. Whether you are looking for a hat for a special occasion or you simply want to add to your hat collection, knowing how to choose the best one is important. Before you pick up the first hat that you like, you have to determine if it is the best one for you.

Consider your face shape

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Your personal style

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Getting value for money

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Net imports of synthetic textile and apparel products increased for the 10th consecutive year in 2019—as the popularity of athleisure wear kept demand for synthetics strong—with synthetic products accounting for the largest share of total net imports for each of the past 6 years. In 2019, synthetic textile and apparel products accounted for 51 percent of the total, while cotton products contributed 42 percent, and linen, wool, and silk combined for an additional 7 percent.

Although cotton’s share of total net fiber product imports had steadily decreased since 2007, the 2019 share appeared to have stabilized near the 2018 level.

Domestic Outlook

U.S. Cotton Supply Revised in March; Demand Unchanged

The U.S. cotton crop estimate for 2019/20 was reduced 300,000 bales this month to 19.8 million bales (upland at 19.1 million bales and extra-long staple at 670,000 bales) based on data in the March Cotton Ginnings report. The latest estimate is 8 percent above the 2018 crop and would be the second largest U.S. production since 2006.

USDA will release the final U.S. cotton production estimate for the 2019 crop on May 12. Based on the current production estimate and beginning stocks of 4.85 million bales, the 2019/20 cotton supply totals nearly 24.7 million bales, 9 percent above 2018/19 and the highest in a dozen years.

U.S. cotton demand in 2019/20 is projected at 19.5 million bales, 10 percent above last season but equal to 2017/18. While U.S. cotton mill use is estimated at 3.0 million bales—similar to 2018/19—exports are forecast at 16.5 million bales, 12 percent higher. Through the first 6 months of 2019/20, U.S. textile mills used approximately 1.5 million bales of cotton, similar to the same period of 2018/19.

Based on the latest estimate, cotton mill use is expected to reach a similar amount during the second half of the season. Meanwhile, U.S. cotton exports are projected higher in 2019/20, as competitively priced U.S. cotton moves abroad amid a rising world import demand that is forecast more than 1 million bales higher this season.

While uncertainty surrounds the coronavirus disease (COVID-19) and the effect on the global economy—and particularly the textile industry—U.S. cotton export commitments through the first 7 months of 2019/20 reached 15.0 million bales, compared with 13.0 million bales for the same period last season. Based on the 2019/20 export projection, the U.S. share of global trade is forecast near 38 percent, above last season but below the previous 2 seasons.

With U.S. cotton demand slightly below production, 2019/20 U.S. ending stocks are projected 5 percent higher at 5.1 million bales. Based on the current supply and demand estimates, the 2019/20 stocks-to-use ratio is forecast near 26 percent, 1 percentage point below 2018/19.

However, the average price received by U.S. upland cotton producers is expected to decline about 10 cents this season to 60 cents per pound, compared with 70.3 cents per pound in 2018/19, as world cotton mill use expectations have weakened this season and stocks outside of China reach a record high.

U.S. Retail Cotton Consumption Smaller in 2019

U.S. domestic cotton consumption (mill use plus net textile imports) declined 1 percent in calendar 2019 as consumer demand for cotton products decreased slightly. Retail consumption in 2019 was estimated near 8.8 billion (raw-fiber-equivalent) pounds, or 18.3 million bale-equivalents for the year.

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Although domestic cotton consumption slipped below 2018, it remains the second highest in 9 years, but is 19 percent below the calendar 2006 record of approximately 10.9 billion pounds.

U.S. cotton product imports and exports each declined slightly in 2019, as demand for synthetic products expanded and limited cotton’s potential. Cotton product imports reached 8.9 billion pounds in calendar year 2019, marginally below 2018 and the second highest since 2010. At the same time, 2019 cotton product exports decreased 2 percent to 1.6 billion pounds, the lowest in 10 years.

Meanwhile, U.S. cotton mill use in calendar 2019 declined 5 percent to 1.4 billion pounds. As a result, the U.S. per capita estimate of retail cotton consumption slipped nearly half a pound in 2019 to about 26.5 pounds. Likewise, U.S. cotton mill use contributed a smaller share (nearly 4.5 pounds) of the total as textile and apparel product manufacturing remains concentrated in low-wage countries.

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