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15-1025-ATL
Friday, May 22, 2015

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Consumer Price Index, Atlanta – April 2015

Area prices up 0.7 percent over the two months; down 0.5 percent over the year

The Consumer Price Index for All Urban Consumers (CPI-U) for Atlanta was up 0.7 percent over the March-April pricing period, the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics reported today. Regional Commissioner Janet S. Rankin noted that the all items less food and energy index increased 0.6 percent over the two months. The energy index was up 2.7 percent, while the food index inched down 0.1 percent over the two month pricing period. (Data in this report are not seasonally adjusted. Accordingly, month-to-month changes may reflect the impact of seasonal influences.)

Over the last 12 months, the CPI-U declined 0.5 percent. The index for all items less food and energy advanced 1.9 percent over the year as increases for shelter and medical care were partially offset by a decrease in prices for apparel and household furnishings and operations. (See chart 1 and table 1.)

 Chart 1. 12-month percent change in CPI for All Urban Consumers (CPI-U), Atlanta, April 2012–April 2015

Food

Food prices inched down 0.1 percent during the March-April pricing period as a 0.2-percent decrease in prices for food at home was largely offset by a 0.1-percent increase in prices for food away from home.

Over the year, the food index rose 3.7 percent, reflecting price increases for both food away from home (6.4 percent) and food at home (2.0 percent).

Energy

The energy index rose 2.7 percent over the two month pricing period, led by a 6.7-percent jump in motor fuel prices. Prices for utility (piped) gas service and electricity each declined over the March-April pricing period, down 2.5 and 0.1 percent, respectively.

Over the year, the energy index declined 21.4 percent, primarily due to a 34.9-percent drop in motor fuel prices. Since April 2014, prices for utility (piped) gas service fell 10.7 percent, while electricity prices rose 1.6 percent.

All items less food and energy

The index for all items less food and energy increased 0.6 percent during the March-April pricing period, reflecting higher prices for shelter (1.2 percent) and recreation (2.3 percent). The apparel index decreased 3.8 percent during the two month pricing period.

From April 2014 to April 2015, the index for all items less food and energy advanced 1.9 percent. Price increases for shelter (4.0 percent) and medical care (5.9 percent) were partially offset by price decreases for apparel (-6.6 percent) and household furnishings and operations (-1.6 percent).

Table A. Atlanta metropolitan area CPI-U 2-month and 12-month percent changes, all items index, not seasonally adjusted
Month

 
2010 2011 2012 2013 2014 2015
2-month 12-month 2-month 12-month 2-month 12-month 2-month 12-month 2-month 12-month 2-month 12-month

February

1.1 1.7 1.6 1.5 1.0 2.4 1.9 2.1 1.3 1.8 0.0 -0.3

April

0.7 2.4 1.7 2.5 1.1 1.8 0.1 1.1 0.8 2.5 0.7 -0.5

June

0.3 0.6 0.9 3.1 0.6 1.5 1.0 1.4 1.5 3.0 - -

August

-0.1 0.6 0.6 3.8 0.6 1.5 0.7 1.5 -0.1 2.2 - -

October

-0.8 0.9 -1.5 3.1 -1.2 1.8 -1.0 1.6 -1.1 2.2 - -

December

-0.2 1.0 -0.3 3.0 -0.9 1.2 -0.2 2.4 -1.5 0.9 - -

The Consumer Price Index for May 2015 is scheduled to be released on Thursday, June 18, 2015, at 8:30 a.m. (ET).


Technical Note

The Consumer Price Index (CPI) is a measure of the average change in prices over time in a fixed market basket of goods and services. The Bureau of Labor Statistics publishes CPIs for two population groups: (1) a CPI for All Urban Consumers (CPI-U) which covers approximately 89 percent of the total population and (2) a CPI for Urban Wage Earners and Clerical Workers (CPI-W) which covers 28 percent of the total population. The CPI-U includes, in addition to wage earners and clerical workers, groups such as professional, managerial, and technical workers, the self-employed, short-term workers, the unemployed, and retirees and others not in the labor force.

The CPI is based on prices of food, clothing, shelter, and fuels, transportation fares, charges for doctors' and dentists' services, drugs, and the other goods and services that people buy for day-to-day living. Each month, prices are collected in 87 urban areas across the country from about 6,000 housing units and approximately 24,000 retail establishments—department stores, supermarkets, hospitals, filling stations, and other types of stores and service establishments. All taxes directly associated with the purchase and use of items are included in the index.

The index measures price changes from a designated reference date (1982-84) that equals 100.0. An increase of 16.5 percent, for example, is shown as 116.5. This change can also be expressed in dollars as follows: the price of a base period "market basket" of goods and services in the CPI has risen from $10 in 1982-84 to $11.65. For further details see the CPI home page on the Internet at www.bls.gov/cpi and the BLS Handbook of Methods, Chapter 17, The Consumer Price Index, available on the Internet at www.bls.gov/opub/hom/homch17_a.htm.

In calculating the index, price changes for the various items in each location are averaged together with weights that represent their importance in the spending of the appropriate population group. Local data are then combined to obtain a U.S. city average. Because the sample size of a local area is smaller, the local area index is subject to substantially more sampling and other measurement error than the national index. In addition, local indexes are not adjusted for seasonal influences. As a result, local area indexes show greater volatility than the national index, although their long-term trends are quite similar. NOTE: Area indexes do not measure differences in the level of prices between cities; they only measure the average change in prices for each area since the base period.

The Atlanta, Ga. metropolitan area covered in this release is comprised of Barrow, Bartow, Carroll, Cherokee, Clayton, Cobb, Coweta, DeKalb, Douglas, Fayette, Forsyth, Fulton, Gwinnett, Henry, Newton, Paulding, Pickens, Rockdale, Spalding, and Walton Counties in Georgia.

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. Consumer Price Index for All Urban Consumers (CPI-U): Indexes and percent changes for selected periods
Atlanta, GA (1982-84=100 unless otherwise noted)
Item and Group

 
Indexes
 
Percent change from-
Feb.
2015
Mar.
2015
Apr.
2015
Apr.
2014
Feb.
2015
Mar.
2015

Expenditure category

 
 

All Items

218.123 - 219.567 -0.5 0.7 -

All items (1967=100)

657.793 - 662.148 - - -

Food and beverages

250.989 - 250.800 3.5 -0.1 -

Food

262.161 - 261.919 3.7 -0.1 -

Food at home

253.277 254.249 252.732 2.0 -0.2 -0.6

Food away from home

277.176 - 277.454 6.4 0.1 -

Alcoholic beverages

151.287 - 151.564 0.8 0.2 -

Housing

212.524 - 214.410 2.8 0.9 -

Shelter

227.984 229.024 230.673 4.0 1.2 0.7

Rent of primary residence (1)

230.417 231.403 232.801 5.1 1.0 0.6

Owners' equiv. rent of residences (1) (2)

224.152 224.670 225.562 3.6 0.6 0.4

Owners' equiv. rent of primary residence (1) (2)

224.152 224.670 225.562 3.6 0.6 0.4

Fuels and utilities

276.109 - 274.405 -0.6 -0.6 -

Household energy

235.053 234.442 233.110 -2.2 -0.8 -0.6

Energy Services (1)

233.742 233.210 231.906 -2.1 -0.8 -0.6

Electricity (1)

207.168 206.930 206.921 1.6 -0.1 0.0

Utility (piped) gas service (1)

254.771 253.439 248.339 -10.7 -2.5 -2.0

Household furnishings and operations

126.062 - 126.944 -1.6 0.7 -

Apparel

135.990 - 130.852 -6.6 -3.8 -

Transportation

185.844 - 189.269 -13.3 1.8 -

Private transportation

184.638 - 188.804 -13.3 2.3 -

Motor fuel

193.764 202.332 206.699 -34.9 6.7 2.2

Gasoline (all types)

192.224 200.773 205.178 -34.9 6.7 2.2

Unleaded regular (3)

188.931 197.585 202.008 -35.3 6.9 2.2

Unleaded midgrade (3) (4)

238.236 246.014 249.464 -34.4 4.7 1.4

Unleaded premium (3)

202.286 209.580 213.820 -32.3 5.7 2.0

Medical Care

409.031 - 408.742 5.9 -0.1 -

Recreation (5)

85.259 - 87.205 0.4 2.3 -

Education and communication (5)

132.311 - 132.900 -0.4 0.4 -

Other goods and services

343.388 - 341.126 0.5 -0.7 -
 

Commodity and service group

 
 

All Items

218.123 - 219.567 -0.5 0.7 -

Commodities

175.525 - 176.408 -5.9 0.5 -

Commodities less food & beverages

141.571 - 142.792 -10.8 0.9 -

Nondurables less food & beverages

170.333 - 172.469 -16.3 1.3 -

Durables

111.684 - 112.053 -2.1 0.3 -

Services

259.276 - 261.213 2.7 0.7 -
 

Special aggregate indexes

 
 

All items less medical care

207.903 - 209.402 -1.0 0.7 -

All items less shelter

218.654 - 219.507 -2.7 0.4 -

Commodities less food

141.590 - 142.776 -10.4 0.8 -

Nondurables

205.676 - 206.837 -7.1 0.6 -

Nondurables less food

167.769 - 169.762 -15.4 1.2 -

Services less rent of shelter (2)

310.906 - 311.955 1.2 0.3 -

Services less medical care services

243.152 - 245.242 2.5 0.9 -

Energy

194.495 198.243 199.703 -21.4 2.7 0.7

All items less energy

220.396 - 221.435 2.1 0.5 -

All items less food and energy

214.374 - 215.577 1.9 0.6 -

Footnotes
(1) This index series was calculated using a Laspeyres estimator. All other item stratum index series were calculated using a geometric means estimator.
(2) Index is on a December 1982=100 base.
(3) Special index based on a substantially smaller sample.
(4) Indexes on a December 1993=100 base.
(5) Indexes on a December 1997=100 base.
 

- Data not available.
NOTE: Index applies to a month as a whole, not to any specific date. Data not seasonally adjusted.
 

 

Last Modified Date: Friday, May 22, 2015