US Imports Of Air Conditioners Hit A Three-Year High

Signs of a scorching summer are apparent all around the U.S.: wilting crops in the grain belt, wildfires in Colorado, and record-high imports of air conditioners.

U.S. imports of window AC units hit a 3-year high in March 2012 at $255 million, or 1.8 million units.

April 2012 saw the next highest number of imports of the past three years, at $253 million. See Panjiva’s full report on window AC units.

These trends suggest that many U.S. importers predicted an unusually hot summer back in January. Products transported via ocean freight, like AC units, typically take 30-45 days to ship from Asia to the U.S.  

(China supplies nearly all of America’s window air conditioners). Thus, an import spike in March means that orders probably spiked in mid to late-January.

Air conditioners aren’t the only imports rising with the summer heat. Indoor fan imports also hit a 3-year high in 2012, with $163 million imported in April.

That’s almost 10% higher than the next highest month, May 2009. See Panjiva’s full report on indoor fans.


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