May 09, 2003
Energy prices paid by consumers increased 10.7 percent in 2002, after decreasing 13.0 percent in 2001.
Gasoline prices increased 24.8 percent in 2002, following a 24.9-percent decrease in 2001. Household fuel oil prices increased 14.7 percent in 2002, after decreasing 26.7 percent the previous year. In contrast, the Consumer Price Index for All Urban Consumers (CPI-U) for all items increased 2.4 percent in 2002, up from a 1.6-percent rise during the prior year.
During 2002, the threat of continuing warfare in the Middle East and of resultant oil-supply disruptions led to increases in the prices of crude oil and its products, including gasoline and household fuel oil. The price of world crude oil increased from nearly $18 per barrel in December 2001 to more than $26 per barrel in December 2002.
Data on consumer prices are from the BLS Consumer Price Index program. For additional information on consumer price changes in 2002, see "Consumer prices up slightly more in 2002, led by energy and hospital services," by Todd Wilson, Monthly Labor Review, March 2003. Annual percent changes are December-to-December changes.