January 17, 2014
From December 2012 to December 2013, the Consumer Price Index for All Urban Consumers (CPI-U) all items index increased 1.5 percent before seasonal adjustment. This is an increase over the October and November 12-month changes of 1.0 percent and 1.2 percent, respectively. The index for all items less food and energy has risen 1.7 percent over the last 12 months, the same figure as for the 12-month periods ending September, October, and November.
|Expenditure category||Percent change|
Food at home
Meats, poultry, fish and eggs
Food away from home
All items less food and energy
The CPI rose 1.5 percent in 2013 after a 1.7- percent increase in 2012. This is lower than the 2.4-percent average annual increase over the last 10 years. This is the first time the CPI has gone up less than 2.0 percent for consecutive years since 1997-98.
The energy index, while volatile from month to month, increased 0.5 percent in 2013, the same increase as in 2012. The gasoline index declined in 2013, falling 1.0 percent after rising 1.7 percent in 2012. The fuel oil index also turned down in 2013, falling 1.8 percent after rising 3.6 percent in 2012. In contrast, the energy services index increased 2.4 percent in 2013 after declining 1.1 percent in 2012. The electricity index, which fell 0.5 percent in 2012, rose 3.2 percent in 2013. The index for natural gas fell slightly in 2013, declining 0.1 percent; it has declined 5 years in a row. Despite the modest increases the past 2 years, the energy index has risen at a 5.9-percent annual rate over the last 10 years.
The index for food rose 1.1 percent in 2013 following a 1.8 percent increase in 2012. Aside from a decline in 2009, this is its smallest December-to-December increase since 1976. The index for food at home, which rose 1.3 percent in 2012, increased 0.4 percent in 2013. Four of the six major grocery store food group indexes declined in 2013; the nonalcoholic beverages index posted the largest decrease, falling 1.4 percent. The only major grocery store food group indexes to rise were the indexes for meats, poultry, fish, and eggs, which increased 2.9 percent, and for cereals and bakery products, which advanced 0.5 percent. The index for food away from home rose 2.1 percent in 2013, a modest deceleration from the 2012 increase of 2.5 percent. Over the last 10 years, the food index has risen at an average annual rate of 2.6 percent.