Recent reports from MarketWatch and Bloomberg Businessweek cite that the US drug prices fell by about 1% last month, representing the largest such dip in prices in decades.

Interestingly, MarketWatch reported that the cost of drugs fell by 0.9%, and that this was the biggest monthly drop since 1969, and Bloomberg reported the cost fell by 0.8%, the largest decrease since 1967.  Whatever the case may be, these are historic figures and allow a bit of fresh air for consumers in the US prescription drug market, what is widely-known for its high prices.

According to MarketWatch, “A so-called ‘patent cliff’ in which a number of exclusive rights expired on a number of top-selling drugs over the last year or two is the likely culprit for the prescription drug price drop.”  These drugs included “Pfizer Inc.’s (PFE -0.05%) cholesterol-fighting superstar Lipitor, as well as the coronary treatment Plavix, sold by Bristol-Myers Squibb (BMY -0.35%) and Sanofi (SNY -0.21%).”

And, while these next two categories did not set records, the price over-the-counter drugs fell by an average of 0.9%, and the cost of medical devices fell by 0.5% last month, amounting to a 1.6% drop in cost since the same time last year for the latter category. (MarketWatch)