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16-1873-SAN
Friday, September 16, 2016

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Consumer Price Index, West Region — August 2016

Area prices were up 0.1 percent over the past month, up 1.6 percent from a year ago

Prices in the West Region, as measured by the Consumer Price Index for All Urban Consumers (CPI-U), inched up 0.1 percent in August, the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics reported today. (See table A.) The August increase was influenced by higher prices for shelter and apparel. (Data in this report are not seasonally adjusted. Accordingly, month-to-month changes may reflect seasonal influences.)

Over the last 12 months, the CPI-U advanced 1.6 percent.  (See chart 1 and table A.)Energy prices fell 12.0 percent, largely the result of a decrease in the price of gasoline. The index for all items less food and energy increased 3.0 percent over the year. (See table 1.) This is the 10th consecutive month that this index has increased by more than 2.5 percent. (See chart 1.)

Food

Food prices edged down 0.1 percent for the month of August. (See table 1.) Prices for food at home declined 0.4 percent, but prices for food away from home edged up 0.2 percent for the same period.

Over the year, food prices increased 0.4 percent. Prices for food away from home rose 4.1 percent, but prices for food at home declined 2.1 percent since a year ago.

Energy

The energy index declined 2.1 percent over the month. The decrease was mainly due to lower prices for gasoline (-5.2 percent). Prices for electricity advanced 0.3 percent, and prices for natural gas service rose 4.8 percent in August.

Energy prices fell 12.0 percent over the year, largely due to lower prices for gasoline (-23.3 percent). Prices for natural gas service increased 2.0 percent, and prices paid for electricity rose 2.5 percent during the past year.

All items less food and energy

The index for all items less food and energy advanced 0.3 percent in August. Higher prices for apparel (2.3 percent) and medical care (0.7 percent) were partially offset by lower prices for new and used motor vehicles (-1.2 percent) and household furnishings and operations (-1.0 percent).

Over the year, the index for all items less food and energy increased 3.0 percent. Components contributing to the increase included medical care (5.0 percent) and shelter (4.9 percent). Partly offsetting the increases were price declines in household furnishings and operations (-0.8 percent) and education and communication (-0.1 percent).

Table A. West Region CPI-U monthly and annual percent changes (not seasonally adjusted)
Month 2011 2012 2013 2014 2015 2016
Monthly Annual Monthly Annual Monthly Annual Monthly Annual Monthly Annual Monthly Annual

January

0.5 1.4 0.4 2.6 0.3 1.7 0.3 1.7 -0.3 0.7 0.5 2.6

February

0.6 1.9 0.4 2.5 0.8 2.0 0.4 1.3 0.6 0.9 0.1 2.1

March

0.9 2.6 0.9 2.4 0.4 1.5 0.6 1.5 0.8 1.1 0.2 1.5

April

0.6 3.0 0.2 2.1 0.0 1.3 0.3 1.8 0.3 1.0 0.5  1.8

May

0.3 3.2 0.2 2.0 0.2 1.3 0.6 2.3 0.8 1.2 0.5 1.5

June

-0.2 3.1 -0.2 2.0 0.1 1.5 0.1 2.3 0.0 1.1 0.2 1.6

July

-0.1 2.9 -0.3 1.8 0.0 1.9 0.1 2.3 0.3 1.3 0.1 1.4

August

0.2 3.0 0.5 2.1 0.1 1.5 -0.1 2.1 -0.1 1.3 0.1 1.6

September

0.4 3.5 0.5 2.2 0.2 1.3 0.1 2.0 -0.2 1.0    

October

0.0 3.4 0.4 2.5 -0.1 0.9 -0.1 2.0 0.0 1.1    

November

-0.2 3.2 -0.7 1.9 -0.4 1.3 -0.6 1.7 -0.2 1.5    

December

-0.3 2.7 -0.5 1.7 0.0 1.8 -0.5 1.3 -0.1 1.8    

The September 2016 Consumer Price Index for the West Region is scheduled to be released on Tuesday October 18, 2016.


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 West Region covered in this release is comprised of the following thirteen states: Alaska, Arizona, California, Colorado, Hawaii, Idaho, Montana, Nevada, New Mexico, Oregon, Utah, Washington, and Wyoming.

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

West (1982-84=100 unless otherwise noted)
Item and Group

 
Indexes
 
Percent change from-
Jun.
2016
Jul.
2016
Aug.
2016
Aug.
2015
Jun.
2016
Jul.
2016

Expenditure category

 
 

All Items

248.267 248.412 248.537 1.6 0.1 0.1

All items (December 1977=100)

401.310 401.545 401.746      

Food and beverages

251.503 251.396 251.107 0.5 -0.2 -0.1

Food

251.582 251.483 251.125 0.4 -0.2 -0.1

Food at home

246.086 245.520 244.517 -2.1 -0.6 -0.4

Food away from home

258.137 258.704 259.267 4.1 0.4 0.2

Alcoholic beverages

247.140 246.919 247.565 1.8 0.2 0.3

Housing

264.688 265.868 266.962 4.1 0.9 0.4

Shelter

300.867 302.297 303.830 4.9 1.0 0.5

Rent of primary residence (1)

315.746 317.191 318.858 5.4 1.0 0.5

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

315.603 317.070 318.592 5.0 0.9 0.5

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

315.608 317.077 318.605 5.0 0.9 0.5

Fuels and utilities

287.839 289.254 292.102 2.7 1.5 1.0

Household energy

249.795 252.217 255.258 2.5 2.2 1.2

Energy services (1)

252.137 254.664 258.008 2.4 2.3 1.3

Electricity (1)

282.011 282.942 283.658 2.5 0.6 0.3

Utility (piped) gas service (1)

196.812 203.315 213.155 2.0 8.3 4.8

Household furnishings and operations

128.832 129.019 127.703 -0.8 -0.9 -1.0

Apparel

118.627 116.579 119.204 1.3 0.5 2.3

Transportation

202.092 200.972 197.258 -5.9 -2.4 -1.8

Private transportation

195.078 194.966 191.675 -6.3 -1.7 -1.7

New and used motor vehicles (3)

101.889 102.117 100.866 -1.4 -1.0 -1.2

New vehicles

147.680 148.294 146.718 0.3 -0.7 -1.1

New cars and trucks (3) (4)

102.562 102.996 101.896 0.2 -0.6 -1.1

New cars (4)

145.566 145.919 144.370 -0.8 -0.8 -1.1

Used cars and trucks

140.147 139.344 138.690 -5.0 -1.0 -0.5

Motor fuel

214.564 212.239 201.320 -23.1 -6.2 -5.1

Gasoline (all types)

213.878 211.507 200.512 -23.3 -6.2 -5.2

Gasoline, unleaded regular (4)

211.393 208.904 197.945 -23.7 -6.4 -5.2

Gasoline, unleaded midgrade (4) (5)

203.730 202.213 191.411 -23.3 -6.0 -5.3

Gasoline, unleaded premium (4)

210.575 208.772 198.577 -21.3 -5.7 -4.9

Medical Care

470.348 470.568 473.807 5.0 0.7 0.7

Medical care commodities

355.450 357.402 360.284 4.6 1.4 0.8

Medical care services

506.997 506.562 509.890 5.1 0.6 0.7

Professional services

348.961 348.740 351.269 3.8 0.7 0.7

Recreation (3)

111.839 112.010 112.195 1.2 0.3 0.2

Education and communication (3)

137.905 137.394 137.840 -0.1 0.0 0.3

Other goods and services

407.374 408.712 408.664 1.7 0.3 0.0
 

Commodity and Service Group

 
 

All Items

248.267 248.412 248.537 1.6 0.1 0.1

Commodities

179.038 178.520 177.562 -2.6 -0.8 -0.5

Commodities less food & beverages

142.908 142.252 141.076 -4.8 -1.3 -0.8

Nondurables less food & beverages

180.153 178.848 177.417 -6.5 -1.5 -0.8

Nondurables less food, beverages, and apparel

223.632 222.769 218.722 -9.0 -2.2 -1.8

Durables

108.646 108.534 107.597 -2.1 -1.0 -0.9

Services

312.230 313.015 314.183 4.0 0.6 0.4

Rent of shelter (2)

320.176 321.703 323.347 5.0 1.0 0.5

Transportation services

294.653 292.409 289.217 2.6 -1.8 -1.1

Other services

341.254 341.692 342.714 1.8 0.4 0.3
 

Special aggregate indexes:

 
 

All items less medical care

238.120 238.262 238.248 1.3 0.1 0.0

All items less food

247.924 248.107 248.305 1.7 0.2 0.1

All items less shelter

228.083 227.681 227.204 -0.3 -0.4 -0.2

Commodities less food

146.835 146.185 145.048 -4.5 -1.2 -0.8

Nondurables

215.785 215.023 214.108 -2.8 -0.8 -0.4

Nondurables less food

185.106 183.854 182.531 -5.9 -1.4 -0.7

Nondurables less food and apparel

225.582 224.777 221.154 -8.0 -2.0 -1.6

Services less rent of shelter (2)

337.394 337.286 337.959 2.8 0.2 0.2

Services less medical care services

298.693 299.554 300.579 3.9 0.6 0.3

Energy

232.755 232.523 227.710 -12.0 -2.2 -2.1

All items less energy

251.462 251.636 252.131 2.6 0.3 0.2

All items less food and energy

252.210 252.432 253.073 3.0 0.3 0.3

Commodities less food and energy commodities

139.804 139.347 139.368 -0.4 -0.3 0.0

Energy commodities

218.754 216.414 205.360 -22.6 -6.1 -5.1

Services less energy services

316.860 317.539 318.575 4.1 0.5 0.3

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) Indexes on a December 1997=100 base.
(4) Special index based on a substantially smaller sample.
(5) Indexes on a December 1993=100 base.
 

Regions defined as the four Census regions. West includes Alaska, Arizona, California, Colorado, Hawaii, Idaho, Montana, Nevada, New Mexico, Oregon, Utah, Washington, and Wyoming.
NOTE: Index applies to a month as a whole, not to any specific date. Data not seasonally adjusted.
 

 

Last Modified Date: Friday, September 16, 2016