Textile and apparel imports into the US fell by 0.3% in November as retailers planned conservatively heading into the all-important holiday season.

Official figures from the Department of Commerce's Office of Textiles and Apparel (OTEXA), showed total textile and apparel imports slipped to 4.23bn square metre equivalents (SME) during the month.

But while year-on-year declines were seen in three of the top ten supply countries, double-digit gains were achieved by India (+19.5% to 309m SME), Pakistan (+11.9% to 223m SME) and Bangladesh (+19.8% to 131m SME).

While China still holds the top supply slot, accounting for more than six times the textile and apparel imports of its closest rival India, its shipments to the US fell 5.28% in November to 1.94bn SME.

In terms of apparel, total imports during the month saw a year-on-year increase of 0.96% to 1.796bn SME.

Imports increased from Vietnam (+8.10% to 158m SME), Bangladesh (+16.92% to 120m SME), Indonesia (+2.15% to 95m SME), Honduras (+2.03% to 94m SME), India (+7.17% to 62m SME) and Pakistan (+16.07% to 55m SME).

But apparel imports fell from China (-1.55% to 732m SME), Cambodia (-20.48% to 70m SME), Mexico (-9.09% to 69m SME) and El Salvador (-1.32% to 57m SME).

Total textile imports were down 1.27% at 2.4bn SME in November.

For the 11 months from January to November 2012, total textile and apparel imports into the US were up 0.2% to 50.0bn SME. Within this, textile imports rose 1.77% to 28.1bn SME, but apparel imports fell 1.75% to 21.89bn SME.