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PLS-4852

Wednesday, November 16, 2011

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Consumer Price Index, Northeast Region – October 2011

Regional Prices Down 0.1 Percent Over the Month; Up 3.6 Percent Over the Year

The Consumer Price Index for All Urban Consumers (CPI-U) in the Northeast region inched down 0.1 percent in October, the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics reported today. Sheila Watkins, the Bureau’s regional commissioner, noted that an over-the-month decrease in the energy index (-2.8 percent) was nearly offset by increases in both the all items less food and energy (0.1 percent) and food (0.3 percent) indexes. (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 increased 3.6 percent. (See chart 1 and table A.) The all items less food and energy index and the energy index advanced over the year, up 2.3 and 13.7 percent, respectively. Also contributing to the recent increase in the all items index were higher prices for food, which rose 4.6 percent since October 2010. (See table 1.)

Chart 1. 12-month percent change in CPI for All Urban Consumers (CPI-U), Northeast region, October 2008 to October 2011 (not seasonally adjusted)

Food

The food index rose 0.3 percent in October as its two components, the food at home and food away from home indexes, recorded identical 0.3-percent increases. Prices for food at home rose uninterrupted for the last 6 months and those for food away from home, for the last 11 months.

Over the year, the food index rose 4.6 percent. Prices for the food at home and food away from home components were up 5.8 and 3.0 percent, respectively, since last October.

Energy

The energy index, which includes prices for household and transportation fuels, fell 2.8 percent since September, due mainly to a decline in the gasoline index. Gasoline prices decreased for the fifth straight month, down 11.8 percent since May and 3.9 percent since September. Electricity prices were also lower in October, posting a 3.1-percent seasonal decrease. Partially offsetting these declines, utility (piped) gas service prices edged up 0.3 percent over the month.

Despite its recent 1-month decline, the energy index advanced 13.7 percent over the year, due in large part to a 25.1-percent jump in gasoline prices since October 2010. Electricity prices also increased over the year, up 0.4 percent, while the utility (piped) gas service index posted its 12th straight over-the-year decline, down 4.6 percent.

All items less food and energy

The index for all items less food and energy inched up 0.1 percent since September. Higher prices for apparel (1.5 percent) and recreation (0.4 percent) contributed to the recent advance. Nearly offsetting these and other increases were lower prices in a number of categories including used cars and trucks (-1.0 percent) and education and communication (-0.2 percent).

Over the last 12 months, the index for all items less food and energy rose 2.3 percent—the largest over-the-year increase since December 2009.  The recent gain was led by an increase in the shelter index, up 2.0 percent over the year. Higher prices for medical care (3.3 percent) and apparel (4.9 percent) also contributed to the advance in the all items less food and energy index since October 2010.

The November 2011 Consumer Price Index for the Northeast region is scheduled to be released on December 16, 2011, at 8:30 a.m. (ET).

Table A. Northeast region CPI-U 1-month and 12-month percent changes, all items index (not seasonally adjusted)
Month 2006 2007 2008 2009 2010 2011
1-month 12-month 1-month 12-month 1-month 12-month 1-month 12-month 1-month 12-month 1-month 12-month

January

1.0 4.1 0.3 2.3 0.4 3.9 0.2 0.5 0.4 3.0 0.4 1.6

February

0.3 3.9 0.4 2.4 0.4 4.0 0.6 0.7 0.0 2.5 0.5 2.0

March

0.6 3.3 0.8 2.6 0.8 3.9 0.2 0.2 0.3 2.6 0.8 2.5

April

0.9 3.8 0.5 2.2 0.5 3.9 0.2 -0.1 0.2 2.5 0.5 2.8

May

0.5 4.6 0.5 2.3 0.9 4.3 0.1 -0.8 0.2 2.6 0.5 3.2

June

0.5 5.1 0.4 2.3 1.1 5.0 0.8 -1.2 -0.1 1.7 0.1 3.4

July

0.4 4.6 0.2 2.0 0.8 5.7 0.1 -1.9 0.0 1.6 0.2 3.6

August

0.3 4.5 -0.2 1.6 -0.3 5.5 0.3 -1.2 0.1 1.4 0.3 3.8

September

-0.8 2.6 -0.1 2.4 -0.4 5.2 0.1 -0.7 -0.1 1.2 0.1 4.0

October

-0.5 1.7 0.2 3.1 -0.9 4.0 0.0 0.2 0.3 1.5 -0.1 3.6

November

-0.2 2.3 0.6 4.0 -1.6 1.7 0.2 2.0 0.2 1.5    

December

0.2 3.0 0.0 3.8 -0.9 0.7 -0.1 2.8 0.0 1.6    

 

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 87 percent of the total population and (2) a CPI for Urban Wage Earners and Clerical Workers (CPI-W) which covers 32 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 4,000 housing units and approximately 26,000 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 Northeast region is comprised of Connecticut, Maine, Massachusetts, New Hampshire, New Jersey, New York, Pennsylvania, Rhode Island, and Vermont.

Information in this release will be made available to sensory impaired individuals upon request. Voice phone: 202-691-5200; TDD message referral phone number:  1-800-877-8339.

For personal assistance or further information on Consumer Price Indexes, as well as other Bureau products, contact the Mid-Atlantic Information Office at (215) 597-3282 from 8:30 a.m. to 12:00 p.m. and 1:00 p.m. to 3:30 p.m. ET.

Table 1. Consumer Price Index for All Urban Consumers (CPI-U): Indexes and percent changes for selected periods, Northeast Region, (1982-84=100 unless otherwise noted) (not seasonally adjusted)
Expenditure category Indexes Percent change from
Historical
data
Aug.
2011
Sep.
2011
Oct.
2011
Oct.
2010
Aug.
2011
Sep.
2011

All items

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243.033 243.323 243.014 3.6 0.0 -0.1

All items (December 1977 = 100)

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382.703 383.159 382.674      
 

Food and beverages

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235.816 236.731 237.413 4.4 0.7 0.3

Food

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235.601 236.533 237.253 4.6 0.7 0.3

Food at home

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235.239 236.477 237.219 5.8 0.8 0.3

Food away from home

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239.049 239.573 240.273 3.0 0.5 0.3

Alcoholic beverages

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237.344 238.015 238.173 1.1 0.3 0.1
 

Housing

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249.693 249.617 249.091 2.1 -0.2 -0.2

Shelter

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298.749 298.435 298.371 2.0 -0.1 0.0

Rent of primary residence (1)

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294.568 295.088 295.974 2.2 0.5 0.3

Owners' equivalent rent of residences (1) (2)

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309.089 309.799 310.193 2.0 0.4 0.1

Owners' equivalent rent of primary residence (1) (2)

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309.030 309.727 310.127 2.0 0.4 0.1

Fuels and utilities

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223.384 224.137 220.827 3.9 -1.1 -1.5

Household energy

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204.837 205.425 201.869 3.7 -1.4 -1.7

Energy services (1) (3)

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194.476 195.563 191.369 -1.1 -1.6 -2.1

Electricity (1)

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192.913 195.468 189.461 0.4 -1.8 -3.1

Utility (piped) gas service (1)

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184.983 182.363 182.943 -4.6 -1.1 0.3

Household furnishings and operations

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126.947 127.068 126.944 0.8 0.0 -0.1
 

Apparel

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126.635 130.676 132.618 4.9 4.7 1.5
 

Transportation

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215.368 214.535 212.273 9.6 -1.4 -1.1

Private transportation

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208.705 207.774 205.452 9.6 -1.6 -1.1

New and used motor vehicles (4)

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100.518 100.285 99.927 3.5 -0.6 -0.4

New vehicles

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141.701 141.726 141.854 3.2 0.1 0.1

New cars and trucks (4) (5)

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98.198 98.220 98.309 3.2 0.1 0.1

New cars (5)

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138.558 138.727 138.696 3.3 0.1 0.0

Used cars and trucks

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164.085 162.454 160.764 6.9 -2.0 -1.0

Motor fuel

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308.070 303.600 291.909 25.0 -5.2 -3.9

Gasoline (all types)

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307.192 302.672 290.809 25.1 -5.3 -3.9

Gasoline, unleaded regular (5)

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309.268 304.431 292.140 25.1 -5.5 -4.0

Gasoline, unleaded midgrade (5) (6)

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311.364 307.507 296.364 25.2 -4.8 -3.6

Gasoline, unleaded premium (5)

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294.521 291.077 280.638 24.3 -4.7 -3.6
 

Medical care

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422.552 424.205 425.368 3.3 0.7 0.3

Medical care commodities

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354.246 355.601 356.728 4.2 0.7 0.3

Medical care services

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439.592 441.325 442.474 3.1 0.7 0.3

Professional services

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337.198 338.223 338.636 2.1 0.4 0.1
 

Recreation (4)

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119.103 118.198 118.628 0.1 -0.4 0.4
 

Education and communication (4)

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134.167 134.976 134.683 0.6 0.4 -0.2
 

Other goods and services

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417.365 418.182 420.094 2.1 0.7 0.5
 

Commodity and service group

 

Commodities

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192.548 192.941 192.474 6.0 0.0 -0.2

Commodities less food and beverages

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166.018 166.174 165.242 7.0 -0.5 -0.6

Nondurables less food and beverages

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214.308 214.973 213.447 10.0 -0.4 -0.7

Durables

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111.755 111.405 111.095 1.7 -0.6 -0.3

Services

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292.625 292.818 292.659 2.1 0.0 -0.1
 

Special aggregate indexes

 

All items less shelter

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224.515 225.034 224.631 4.3 0.1 -0.2

All items less medical care

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235.005 235.245 234.886 3.6 -0.1 -0.2

Commodities less food

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168.872 169.044 168.137 6.7 -0.4 -0.5

Nondurables

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226.382 227.169 226.641 7.2 0.1 -0.2

Nondurables less food

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215.637 216.302 214.866 9.4 -0.4 -0.7

Services less rent of shelter (2)

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296.403 297.192 296.933 2.2 0.2 -0.1

Services less medical care services

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282.188 282.301 282.077 2.0 0.0 -0.1

Energy

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248.273 246.723 239.732 13.7 -3.4 -2.8

All items less energy

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244.840 245.323 245.704 2.6 0.4 0.2

All items less food and energy

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248.055 248.459 248.780 2.3 0.3 0.1

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) Indexes on a December 1982=100 base.
(3) This index series was formerly titled Gas (piped) and electricity.
(4) Indexes on a December 1997=100 base.
(5) Special index based on a substantially smaller sample.
(6) Indexes on a December 1993=100 base.

Note: Index applies to a month as a whole, not to any specific date.


 

Last Modified Date: November 16, 2011