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18-1497-PHI
Thursday, September 13, 2018

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Consumer Price Index, Philadelphia-Camden-Wilmington – August 2018

Area prices up 0.3 percent since June; 1.7 percent over the year

The Consumer Price Index for All Urban Consumers (CPI-U) for Philadelphia-Camden-Wilmington edged up 0.3 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 (0.3 percent). The food index also increased, up 0.9 percent, while the energy index declined, down 0.9 percent. (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 1.7 percent. (See chart 1 and table A.) The over-the-year rise was led by increases in the all items less food and energy index (1.0 percent) and the energy index (10.2 percent). Prices for food also increased since August 2017, up 0.8 percent. (See table 1.)

Food

Following a 0.2-percent decrease from April to June, the food index increased 0.9 percent over the last two months. Prices were higher for both food at home (1.1 percent) and food away from home (0.7 percent) since June. Within the food at home component, prices were higher for various items including breakfast cereal and carbonated drinks, while prices were lower for items including frozen and freeze dried prepared foods.

Over the year, the food index increased 0.8 percent. Prices for food away from home rose 1.1 percent, and those for food at home increased 0.6 percent.

Energy

The energy index, which includes prices for household and transportation fuels, decreased 0.9 percent since June. Lower prices for gasoline (-0.7 percent) led the decrease. Prices were also lower over the last two months for electricity, down 0.5 percent, while those for utility (piped) gas service increased 0.4 percent.

Over the year, the energy index rose 10.2 percent, due almost entirely to a 20.7-percent rise in gasoline prices. Prices were also higher for utility (piped) gas service (5.6 percent), while those for electricity declined 2.9 percent over the year.

All items less food and energy

The index for all items less food and energy edged up 0.3 percent from June to August, led by higher prices for shelter (0.7 percent), medical care (0.9 percent), and apparel (2.7 percent). Lower prices for education and communication (-0.4 percent), among others, moderated the increase in the all items less food and energy index since June.

Since August 2017, the index for all items less food and energy increased 1.0 percent. Prices were higher for a number of items including shelter (1.8 percent), medical care (2.7 percent) and new and used motor vehicles (3.5 percent).

Table A. Philadelphia CPI-U 2-month and 12-month percent changes, all items index, not seasonally adjusted
Month20142015201620172018
2-month12-month2-month12-month2-month12-month2-month12-month2-month12-month

February

0.51.0-0.2-0.10.30.30.72.10.40.5

April

0.51.40.50.00.90.60.01.30.91.4

June

0.61.80.80.20.30.1-0.30.70.21.9

August

0.01.3-0.5-0.3-0.20.40.51.40.31.7

October

-0.11.6-0.3-0.50.61.30.00.8

December

-0.80.6-0.6-0.2-0.11.7-0.10.8

The Consumer Price Index for September 2018 is scheduled to be released Thursday, October 11, 2018 at 8:30 am (ET).


Technical Note

The Consumer Price Index for Philadelphia-Camden-Wilmington 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 93 percent of the total population and (2) a CPI for Urban Wage Earners and Clerical Workers (CPI-W) which covers approximately 29 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 75 urban areas across the country from about 5,000 housing units and approximately 22,000 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-Camden-Wilmington, PA-NJ-DE-MD, Core Based Statistical Area includes Bucks, Chester, Delaware, Montgomery, and Philadelphia Counties in Pennsylvania; Burlington, Camden, 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-Camden-Wilmington, PA-NJ-DE-MD, (1982-84=100 unless otherwise noted) (not seasonally adjusted)
Expenditure categoryIndexesPercent change from
Historical
data
Jun.
2018
Jul.
2018
Aug.
2018
Aug.
2017
Jun.
2018
Jul.
2018

All items

Go to web page with historical data for series CUURS12BSA0
252.386 253.0851.70.3 

All items (1967 = 100)

Go to web page with historical data for series CUURS12BAA0
729.129 731.147   

Food and beverages

Go to web page with historical data for series CUURS12BSAF
232.867 234.8530.70.9 

Food

Go to web page with historical data for series CUURS12BSAF1
232.804 234.9170.80.9 

Food at home

Go to web page with historical data for series CUURS12BSAF11
237.299237.074239.8230.61.11.2

Cereals and bakery products

Go to web page with historical data for series CUURS12BSAF111
300.000 307.957 2.7 

Meats, poultry, fish, and eggs

Go to web page with historical data for series CUURS12BSAF112
263.866 265.954 0.8 

Dairy and related products

Go to web page with historical data for series CUURS12BSEFJ
196.813 195.021 -0.9 

Fruits and vegetables

Go to web page with historical data for series CUURS12BSAF113
266.824 272.744 2.2 

Nonalcoholic beverages and beverage materials(1)

Go to web page with historical data for series CUURS12BSAF114
160.480 159.088 -0.9 

Other food at home

Go to web page with historical data for series CUURS12BSAF115
216.334 219.195 1.3 

Food away from home

Go to web page with historical data for series CUURS12BSEFV
221.195 222.7051.10.7 

Alcoholic beverages

Go to web page with historical data for series CUURS12BSAF116
231.310 231.435-0.60.1 

Housing

Go to web page with historical data for series CUURS12BSAH
259.777 260.8061.70.4 

Shelter

Go to web page with historical data for series CUURS12BSAH1
323.316325.324325.5281.80.70.1

Rent of primary residence

Go to web page with historical data for series CUURS12BSEHA
302.804303.297303.3502.10.20.0

Owners' equivalent rent of residences(2)

Go to web page with historical data for series CUURS12BSEHC
332.050332.674332.9231.70.30.1

Owners' equivalent rent of primary residence(2)

Go to web page with historical data for series CUURS12BSEHC01
332.050332.674332.9231.70.30.1

Fuels and utilities

Go to web page with historical data for series CUURS12BSAH2
207.838 206.0082.2-0.9 

Household energy

Go to web page with historical data for series CUURS12BSAH21
172.026170.473170.1741.9-1.1-0.2

Energy services

Go to web page with historical data for series CUURS12BSEHF
180.112180.230179.856-0.1-0.1-0.2

Electricity

Go to web page with historical data for series CUURS12BSEHF01
181.547181.326180.705-2.9-0.5-0.3

Utility (piped) gas service

Go to web page with historical data for series CUURS12BSEHF02
166.583167.213167.2405.60.40.0

Household furnishings and operations

Go to web page with historical data for series CUURS12BSAH3
113.486 112.9660.2-0.5 

Apparel

Go to web page with historical data for series CUURS12BSAA
110.436 113.424-0.12.7 

Transportation

Go to web page with historical data for series CUURS12BSAT
218.416 216.5324.3-0.9 

Private transportation

Go to web page with historical data for series CUURS12BSAT1
217.592 216.6754.8-0.4 

New and used motor vehicles(3)

Go to web page with historical data for series CUURS12BSETA
98.127 98.213 0.1 

New vehicles(1)

Go to web page with historical data for series CUURS12BSETA01
177.920 177.216 -0.4 

Used cars and trucks(1)

Go to web page with historical data for series CUURS12BSETA02
256.560 259.965 1.3 

Motor fuel

Go to web page with historical data for series CUURS12BSETB
272.570271.814270.60720.5-0.7-0.4

Gasoline (all types)

Go to web page with historical data for series CUURS12BSETB01
268.999268.262267.03820.7-0.7-0.5

Gasoline, unleaded regular(4)

Go to web page with historical data for series CUURS12BSS47014
265.972265.357264.04521.2-0.7-0.5

Gasoline, unleaded midgrade(4)(5)

Go to web page with historical data for series CUURS12BSS47015
272.459271.434270.72817.7-0.6-0.3

Gasoline, unleaded premium(4)

Go to web page with historical data for series CUURS12BSS47016
268.983267.423266.89217.4-0.8-0.2

Motor vehicle insurance(1)

Go to web page with historical data for series CUURS12BSETE
733.043 724.327 -1.2 

Medical care

Go to web page with historical data for series CUURS12BSAM
519.516 524.3712.70.9 

Recreation(3)

Go to web page with historical data for series CUURS12BSAR
119.553 119.693-2.50.1 

Education and communication(3)

Go to web page with historical data for series CUURS12BSAE
130.990 130.4030.9-0.4 

Tuition, other school fees, and child care(1)

Go to web page with historical data for series CUURS12BSEEB
1,031.999 1,020.832 -1.1 

Other goods and services

Go to web page with historical data for series CUURS12BSAG
535.731 537.5731.40.3 

Commodity and service group

Commodities

Go to web page with historical data for series CUURS12BSAC
181.531 182.3623.20.5 

Commodities less food and beverages

Go to web page with historical data for series CUURS12BSACL11
151.701 152.0804.60.2 

Nondurables less food and beverages

Go to web page with historical data for series CUURS12BSANL11
197.765 198.9797.30.6 

Durables

Go to web page with historical data for series CUURS12BSAD
102.402 102.0550.5-0.3 

Services

Go to web page with historical data for series CUURS12BSAS
324.644 325.2610.90.2 

Special aggregate indexes

All items less shelter

Go to web page with historical data for series CUURS12BSA0L2
229.244 229.3731.60.1 

All items less medical care

Go to web page with historical data for series CUURS12BSA0L5
241.147 241.6611.60.2 

Commodities less food

Go to web page with historical data for series CUURS12BSACL1
154.659 155.0364.40.2 

Nondurables

Go to web page with historical data for series CUURS12BSAN
217.663 219.2384.20.7 

Nondurables less food

Go to web page with historical data for series CUURS12BSANL1
199.874 201.0436.80.6 

Services less rent of shelter(2)

Go to web page with historical data for series CUURS12BSASL2RS
333.413 332.2850.2-0.3 

Services less medical care services

Go to web page with historical data for series CUURS12BSASL5
310.095 310.7650.90.2 

Energy

Go to web page with historical data for series CUURS12BSA0E
208.725207.479206.84210.2-0.9-0.3

All items less energy

Go to web page with historical data for series CUURS12BSA0LE
259.029 260.0381.00.4 

All items less food and energy

Go to web page with historical data for series CUURS12BSA0L1E
266.052 266.9111.00.3 

Footnotes
(1) Indexes on a December 1977=100 base
(2) Indexes 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.

 

Last Modified Date: Thursday, September 13, 2018