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Thursday, March 10, 2022
Prices in the Philadelphia-Camden-Wilmington area, as measured by the Consumer Price Index for All Urban Consumers (CPI-U), advanced 1.5 percent for the 2 months ending in February 2022, the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics reported today. Regional Commissioner Alexandra Hall Bovee noted that the February increase was primarily due to a 1.2 percent jump in the all items less food and energy index where nearly every major component increased since December. A 4.7 percent increase in the energy index and a 2.1 percent rise in the food index accounted for the remaining third of the overall increase. (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 advanced 7.3 percent, the largest over-the-year increase since December 1990. (See chart 1 and table A.) The index for all items less food and energy increased 5.9 percent over the year, the largest over-the-year increase since March 1991. Energy prices were up 24.4 percent mostly due to higher gasoline prices. Food prices increased 8.2 percent, the largest over-the-year increase for food since February 1990. (See table 1.)Food
Food prices increased 2.1 percent in February, reflecting a 3.7-percent price increase for food at home, the largest such increase since October 2003, driven by increasing prices for nonalcoholic beverages and beverage materials (8.7 percent), fruits and vegetables (5.4 percent), and cereals and bakery products (5.6 percent), among other items. The increases in nonalcoholic beverages and beverage materials and fruits and vegetables were the largest since these series started in 2018. These gains were partially offset by a 0.4 percent decline for the other food at home category. Food away from home prices decreased 0.1 percent since December.
Over the year, food prices increased 8.2 percent, dominated by a 10.1 percent jump in the food at home index; each of these were the largest over-the-year increases in those indexes since February 1990. All of the major grocery categories were up over the year, led by meats, poultry, fish, and eggs where the 17.3 percent increase was the largest since the series began in December 2018. Prices for food away from home also rose, up 5.5 percent, the largest increase since November 1989.Energy
The energy index increased 4.7 percent over the 2-month pricing period, largely due to higher prices for gasoline and electricity, both up 4.6 percent. Utility (piped) gas service increased just 0.9 percent in the same period, moderating after seven consecutive increases that ranged from 2.2 to 13.3 percent.
Over the year, the energy index increased 24.4 percent, dominated by a 31.6 percent increase for gasoline which moderated after peaking at 48.4 percent in May 2021. Electricity prices were up 11.2 percent and utility (piped) gas service increased 22.6 percent, the largest over-the-year gain since May 2006.All items less food and energy
The index for all items less food and energy advanced 1.2 percent from December to February driven by higher prices for shelter (0.7 percent), apparel (7.7 percent), and recreation (2.2 percent). Within the shelter index, the owners' equivalent rent of residences index increased just 0.5 percent, moderating after a 2.1 percent jump in December 2021. New and used motor vehicle prices increased 1.2 percent, due to a 2.4 percent increase in new vehicles and a 2.6 percent increase in used cars and trucks.
Over the year, the index for all items less food and energy increased 5.9 percent. This increase reflects an increase in the new and used motor vehicles category (28.8 percent). The 42.7 percent over-the-year increase for used cars and trucks was part of a sustained increase in that index which began in April 2021 and peaked at 45.3 percent in June. Over the year prices for shelter increased 5.0 percent, partially driven by owners' equivalent rent of residences which increased 4.6 percent.
The Consumer Price Index for April 2022 is scheduled to be released on Wednesday, May 11, 2022, at 8:30 a.m. (ET).
The Consumer Price Index for Philadelphia-Camden-Wilmington is published bi-monthly. The Consumer Price Index (CPI) is a measures 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 U.S. population and (2) a CPI for Urban Wage Earners and Clerical Workers (CPI-W) which covers approximately 29 percent of the total U.S. 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; for most of the CPI-U the reference base is 1982-84 equals 100. An increase of 7 percent from the reference base, for example, is shown as 107.000. Alternatively, that relationship can also be expressed as the price of a base period market basket of goods and services rising from $100 to $107. For further details see the CPI home page on the internet at www.bls.gov/cpi and the CPI section of the BLS Handbook of Methods available on the internet at www.bls.gov/opub/hom/cpi/. 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, 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 individuals with sensory impairments upon request. Voice phone: (202) 691-5200; Telecommunications Relay Service: 7-1-1.
|Expenditure category||Indexes||Percent change from|
All items (1967 = 100)
Food and beverages
Food at home
Cereals and bakery products
Meats, poultry, fish, and eggs
Dairy and related products
Fruits and vegetables
Nonalcoholic beverages and beverage materials(1)
Other food at home
Food away from home
Rent of primary residence
Owners' equivalent rent of residences(2)
Owners' equivalent rent of primary residence(2)
Fuels and utilities
Utility (piped) gas service
Household furnishings and operations
New and used motor vehicles(3)
Used cars and trucks(1)
Gasoline (all types)
Gasoline, unleaded regular(4)
Gasoline, unleaded premium(4)
Motor vehicle insurance(1)
Education and communication(3)
Tuition, other school fees, and child care(1)
Other goods and services
Commodity and service group
Commodities less food and beverages
Nondurables less food and beverages
Special aggregate indexes
All items less shelter
All items less medical care
Commodities less food
Nondurables less food
Services less rent of shelter(2)
Services less medical care services
All items less energy
All items less food and energy
Last Modified Date: Thursday, March 10, 2022