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17-1289-PHI
Thursday, September 14, 2017

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Consumer Price Index, Philadelphia-Wilmington-Atlantic City – August 2017

Area prices up 0.5 percent since June and 1.4 percent over the year

The Consumer Price Index for All Urban Consumers (CPI-U) for Philadelphia-Wilmington-Atlantic City advanced 0.5 percent from June to August, the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics reported today. Regional Commissioner Sheila Watkins noted that the recent advance was led by an increase in the all items less food and energy index (0.4 percent). The food index and energy index also increased, up 0.8 percent and 0.7 percent, respectively. (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 1.4 percent. (See chart 1 and table A.) The over-the-year rise was due mostly to increases in the all items less food and energy index (1.1 percent) and the energy index (7.1 percent). Prices for food also rose since August 2016, up 0.5 percent. (See table 1.)

Food

Following a 1.1-percent decline from April to June, the food index increased 0.8 percent over the last two months. Prices for food at home advanced 0.8 percent, and those for food away from home rose 0.7 percent since June. Within the food at home component, higher prices for various items including chicken and uncooked beef steaks were moderated by lower prices for frozen and freeze dried prepared foods, among others.

Over the year, the food index increased 0.5 percent. Higher prices for food away from home (1.8 percent) were slightly offset by lower prices for food at home (-0.4 percent).

Energy

The energy index, which includes prices for household and transportation fuels, rose 0.7 percent since June. This was due largely to higher prices for gasoline, up 2.8 percent over the last two months. Prices for utility (piped) gas service also increased since June, up 0.4 percent, while those for electricity decreased, down 0.9 percent.

Over the year, the energy index rose 7.1 percent, led by an 18.1-percent advance in gasoline prices. Prices were also higher for utility (piped) gas service (7.2 percent), while those for electricity declined 3.2 percent over the year.

All items less food and energy

The index for all items less food and energy increased 0.4 percent from June to August. Higher prices for shelter (0.8 percent), along with those for apparel (2.9 percent), were moderated by lower prices for household furnishings and operations (-0.7 percent), among others, since June.

Since August 2016, the index for all items less food and energy increased 1.1 percent. This was largely due to higher prices for shelter (2.3 percent). Lower prices for various items including education and communication (-3.2 percent), moderated the 12-month increase in the all items less food and energy index.

Table A. Philadelphia CPI-U 2-month and 12-month percent changes, all items index, not seasonally adjusted
Month20132014201520162017
2-month12-month2-month12-month2-month12-month2-month12-month2-month12-month

February

0.71.80.51.0-0.2-0.10.30.30.72.1

April

0.11.10.51.40.50.00.90.60.01.3

June

0.31.50.61.80.80.20.30.1-0.30.7

August

0.51.10.01.3-0.5-0.3-0.20.30.51.4

October

-0.40.3-0.11.6-0.3-0.50.61.3  

December

0.11.2-0.80.6-0.6-0.2-0.11.7  

The Consumer Price Index for October 2017 is scheduled to be released Wednesday, November 15, 2017 at 8:30 am (ET).

Consumer Price Index Geographic Revision for 2018

In January 2018, BLS will introduce a new geographic area sample for the Consumer Price Index (CPI). As part of the new sample, the index for this area will be renamed. The first indexes using the new structure will be published in February 2018. Additional information on the geographic revision is available at: www.bls.gov/cpi/additional-resources/geographic-revision-2018.htm.


Technical Note

The Consumer Price Index for Philadelphia-Wilmington-Atlantic City is published bi-monthly. 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 approximately 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 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/pdf/homch17.pdf.

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 Philadelphia-Wilmington-Atlantic City, Pa.-N.J.-Del.-Md., Consolidated Metropolitan Statistical Area includes Bucks, Chester, Delaware, Montgomery, and Philadelphia Counties in Pennsylvania; Atlantic, Burlington, Camden, Cape May, Cumberland, Gloucester, and Salem Counties in New Jersey; New Castle County in Delaware; and Cecil County in Maryland.

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, Philadelphia-Wilmington-Atlantic City, Pa.-N.J.-Del.-Md., (1982-84=100 unless otherwise noted) (not seasonally adjusted)
Expenditure categoryIndexesPercent change from
 
Historical
data
Jun.
2017
Jul.
2017
Aug.
2017
Aug.
2016
Jun.
2017
Jul.
2017

All items

Go to web page with historical data for series CUURA102SA0
247.713 248.9191.40.5 

All items (1967 = 100)

Go to web page with historical data for series CUURA102AA0
715.628 719.113   
 

Food and beverages

Go to web page with historical data for series CUURA102SAF
231.821 233.2520.50.6 

Food

Go to web page with historical data for series CUURA102SAF1
231.272 233.0300.50.8 

Food at home

Go to web page with historical data for series CUURA102SAF11
236.426238.970238.332-0.40.8-0.3

Food away from home

Go to web page with historical data for series CUURA102SEFV
218.821 220.3411.80.7 

Alcoholic beverages

Go to web page with historical data for series CUURA102SAF116
235.301 232.8820.5-1.0 
 

Housing

Go to web page with historical data for series CUURA102SAH
255.246 256.4721.90.5 

Shelter

Go to web page with historical data for series CUURA102SAH1
317.446318.637319.9062.30.80.4

Rent of primary residence(1)

Go to web page with historical data for series CUURA102SEHA
295.434296.425297.2122.00.60.3

Owners' equivalent rent of residences(1)(2)(3)

Go to web page with historical data for series CUURA102SEHC
326.190326.802327.4251.80.40.2

Owners' equivalent rent of primary residence(1)(2)(3)

Go to web page with historical data for series CUURA102SEHC01
326.190326.802327.4251.80.40.2

Fuels and utilities

Go to web page with historical data for series CUURA102SAH2
202.895 201.5700.4-0.7 

Household energy

Go to web page with historical data for series CUURA102SAH21
168.346168.041167.0720.2-0.8-0.6

Gas (piped) and electricity(1)

Go to web page with historical data for series CUURA102SEHF
180.876181.103179.972-0.1-0.5-0.6

Electricity(1)

Go to web page with historical data for series CUURA102SEHF01
187.794187.818186.099-3.2-0.9-0.9

Utility (piped) gas service(1)

Go to web page with historical data for series CUURA102SEHF02
157.737158.327158.3517.20.40.0

Household furnishings and operations

Go to web page with historical data for series CUURA102SAH3
113.550 112.7790.0-0.7 
 

Apparel

Go to web page with historical data for series CUURA102SAA
110.298 113.4853.52.9 
 

Transportation

Go to web page with historical data for series CUURA102SAT
206.744 207.6564.50.4 

Private transportation

Go to web page with historical data for series CUURA102SAT1
205.059 206.7425.00.8 

Motor fuel

Go to web page with historical data for series CUURA102SETB
218.369214.811224.47918.12.84.5

Gasoline (all types)

Go to web page with historical data for series CUURA102SETB01
215.345211.825221.33118.12.84.5

Gasoline, unleaded regular(4)

Go to web page with historical data for series CUURA102SS47014
211.757208.143217.83518.52.94.7

Gasoline, unleaded midgrade(4)(5)

Go to web page with historical data for series CUURA102SS47015
223.721221.589229.96617.12.83.8

Gasoline, unleaded premium(4)

Go to web page with historical data for series CUURA102SS47016
222.572219.225227.26516.12.13.7
 

Medical care

Go to web page with historical data for series CUURA102SAM
509.792 510.778-0.40.2 
 

Recreation(6)

Go to web page with historical data for series CUURA102SAR
122.888 122.7400.9-0.1 
 

Education and communication(6)

Go to web page with historical data for series CUURA102SAE
128.915 129.279-3.20.3 
 

Other goods and services

Go to web page with historical data for series CUURA102SAG
529.328 530.3221.40.2 
 

Commodity and service group

 

Commodities

Go to web page with historical data for series CUURA102SAC
175.706 176.6471.30.5 

Commodities less food and beverages

Go to web page with historical data for series CUURA102SACL11
144.691 145.3931.80.5 

Nondurables less food and beverages

Go to web page with historical data for series CUURA102SANL11
183.649 185.4434.21.0 

Durables

Go to web page with historical data for series CUURA102SAD
101.871 101.594-1.7-0.3 

Services

Go to web page with historical data for series CUURA102SAS
320.743 322.2271.50.5 
 

Special aggregate indexes

 

All items less shelter

Go to web page with historical data for series CUURA102SA0L2
224.946 225.6971.00.3 

All items less medical care

Go to web page with historical data for series CUURA102SA0L5
236.687 237.9071.60.5 

Commodities less food

Go to web page with historical data for series CUURA102SACL1
147.888 148.4991.80.4 

Nondurables

Go to web page with historical data for series CUURA102SAN
208.832 210.4902.30.8 

Nondurables less food

Go to web page with historical data for series CUURA102SANL1
186.671 188.2083.90.8 

Services less rent of shelter(2)

Go to web page with historical data for series CUURA102SASL2RS
331.290 331.6960.70.1 

Services less medical care services

Go to web page with historical data for series CUURA102SASL5
306.328 307.9681.70.5 

Energy

Go to web page with historical data for series CUURA102SA0E
186.426184.974187.7507.10.71.5

All items less energy

Go to web page with historical data for series CUURA102SA0LE
256.344 257.5471.00.5 

All items less food and energy

Go to web page with historical data for series CUURA102SA0L1E
263.217 264.3411.10.4 

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 underwent a change in composition in January 2010. The expenditure class now includes weight from secondary residences, and has been re-titled "Owners' equivalent rent of residences." The item stratum "Owners' equivalent rent of primary residence" excludes secondary residences.
(4) Special index based on a substantially smaller sample.
(5) Indexes on a December 1993=100 base.
(6) Indexes on a December 1997=100 base.

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

 

Last Modified Date: Thursday, September 14, 2017