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Friday, March 27, 2015

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Average Energy Prices, Washington-Baltimore – February 2015

Gasoline prices averaged $2.272 a gallon in the Washington-Baltimore area in February 2015, the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics reported today. Regional Commissioner Sheila Watkins noted that area gasoline prices were down 33.0 percent compared to last February when they averaged $3.393 per gallon. Washington area households paid an average of 13.0 cents per kilowatt hour (kWh) of electricity in February 2015, almost unchanged from 12.9 cents per kWh in February 2014. The average price of utility (piped) gas at $1.087 per therm in February was down 7.5 percent from $1.175 per therm a year earlier. (Data in this release are not seasonally adjusted; accordingly, over-the-year-analysis is used throughout.)

At $2.272 a gallon, the price for gasoline in the Washington area was close to the national average of $2.308 a gallon in February 2015. Last February, gasoline prices in Washington were also similar to those for the nation. In fact, prices for a gallon of gasoline in Washington have differed from the U.S. average by less than 2 percent in February over the past five years. (See chart 1 and table 1.)

 Chart 1. Average prices for gasoline, Washington-Baltimore and United States, February 2011-February 2015

The 13.0 cents per kWh that Washington households paid for electricity in February 2015 was 5.8 percent lower than the nationwide average of 13.8 cents per kWh. Last February, the price per kWh for electricity in Washington was 3.7 percent lower than the national average. Since 2012, Washington area electricity prices have been lower than the national average by 3.1 percent or more in the month of February. (See chart 2.)

 Chart 2. Average prices for electricity, Washington-Baltimore and United States, February 2011-February 2015

The price paid by Washington area consumers for utility (piped) gas, commonly referred to as natural gas, was $1.087 per therm in February 2015, 7.9 percent above the national average of $1.007 per therm. Utility (piped) gas prices in the Washington area have ranged from 6.3 percent to 17.3 percent higher than the national average in February over the past five years. (See chart 3.)

 Chart 3. Average prices for utility (piped) gas, Washington-Baltimore and United States, February 2011-February 2015

The Washington-Baltimore, D.C.-Md.-Va.-W.Va. Consolidated Metropolitan Statistical Area includes the District of Columbia; Baltimore City and the counties of Anne Arundel, Baltimore, Calvert, Carroll, Charles, Frederick, Harford, Howard, Montgomery, Prince George’s, Queen Anne’s, and Washington in Maryland; the cities of Alexandria, Fairfax, Falls Church, Fredericksburg, Manassas, and Manassas Park and the counties of Arlington, Clarke, Culpeper, Fairfax, Fauquier, King George, Loudoun, Prince William, Spotsylvania, Stafford, and Warren in Virginia; and the counties of Berkeley and Jefferson in West Virginia.

The Consumer Price Index for March 2015 is scheduled to be released on Friday, April 17, 2015, at 8:30 a.m. (ET).


Technical Note

Average prices are estimated from Consumer Price Index (CPI) data for selected commodity series to support the research and analytic needs of CPI data users. Average prices for electricity, utility (piped) gas, and gasoline are published monthly for the U.S. city average, the 4 regions, the 3 population size classes, 10 region/size-class cross-classifications, and the 14 largest local index areas. For electricity, average prices per kilowatt-hour (kWh) are published. For utility (piped) gas, average prices per therm are published. For gasoline, the average price per gallon is published. Average prices for commonly available grades of gasoline are published as well as the average price across all grades.

All eligible prices are converted to a price per normalized quantity. These prices are then used to estimate a price for a defined fixed quantity. The average price per kilowatt-hour represents the total bill divided by the kilowatt-hour usage. The total bill is the sum of all items applicable to all consumers appearing on an electricity bill including, but not limited to, variable rates per kWh, fixed costs, taxes, surcharges, and credits. This calculation also applies to the average price per therm for utility (piped) gas.

Information in this release will be made available to sensory impaired individuals upon request. Voice phone: (202) 691-5200; Federal Relay Service: (800) 877-8339.

Table 1. Average prices for utility (piped) gas, gasoline, and electricity, United States and the Washington-Baltimore area, February 2014-February 2015, not seasonally adjusted
Year and Month Gasoline per gallon Electricity per kWh Utility (piped) gas per therm
United States Washington-Baltimore United States Washington-Baltimore United States Washington-Baltimore
2014            

February

$3.422 $3.393 $0.134 $0.129 $1.078 $1.175

March

3.590 3.545 0.135 0.129 1.154 1.333

April

3.717 3.680 0.131 0.129 1.137 1.229

May

3.745 3.700 0.136 0.129 1.111 1.169

June

3.750 3.688 0.143 0.128 1.088 1.174

July

3.690 3.664 0.143 0.129 1.093 1.150

August

3.540 3.478 0.143 0.131 1.060 1.044

September

3.463 3.377 0.141 0.135 1.058 1.058

October

3.241 3.176 0.136 0.131 1.033 1.055

November

2.945 2.913 0.134 0.127 1.035 1.078

December

2.618 2.665 0.135 0.127 1.060 1.128
2015            

January

2.170 2.292 0.138 0.129 1.036 1.133

February

2.308 2.272 0.138 0.130 1.007 1.087

 

Last Modified Date: Friday, March 27, 2015