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News Release Information

20-1412-PHI
Tuesday, July 14, 2020

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Consumer Price Index, Philadelphia-Camden-Wilmington – June 2020

Area prices up 0.6 percent since April; up 0.1 percent over the year

The Consumer Price Index for All Urban Consumers (CPI-U) for Philadelphia-Camden-Wilmington increased 0.6 percent from April to June, the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics reported today. Regional Commissioner Sheila Watkins noted that the recent two-month increase reflected a 0.6-percent rise in the all items less food and energy index. The food index and energy index also increased since April, up 0.7 and 1.5 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 inched up 0.1 percent. (See chart 1 and table A.) The over-the-year rise was led by an increase in the food index (5.2 percent). The all items less food and energy index also advanced since June 2019, up 0.5 percent, while the energy index declined 13.7 percent. (See table 1.)

Food

The food index increased 0.7 percent over the last two months. Prices for food at home increased since April, up 0.7 percent, and those for food away from home rose 0.6 percent. Within the food at home component, prices were higher for items such as spices, seasonings, condiments, sauces, and bread, while prices were lower for cheese and related products and rice, pasta, cornmeal.

Over the year, the food index increased 5.2 percent. Prices for food at home rose 5.9 percent, and those for food away from home were up 4.5 percent.

Energy

The energy index, which includes prices for household and transportation fuels, rose 1.5 percent since April. The two-month rise was led by a 4.5-percent increase in gasoline prices. Prices were also higher for electricity, up 1.8 percent, while those for utility (piped) gas service decreased, down 2.2 percent.

Over the year, the energy index decreased 13.7 percent, due to a drop in gasoline prices, down 20.6 percent. Prices were also lower for utility (piped) gas service and electricity, down 9.2 and 1.3 percent, respectively.

All items less food and energy

The index for all items less food and energy increased 0.6 percent from April to June. Higher prices were led by shelter (0.6 percent) and medical care (0.9 percent), while lower prices were led by apparel (-2.2 percent) and education and communication (-0.4 percent).

Since June 2019, the index for all items less food and energy increased 0.5 percent. Prices were higher for a number of items including shelter (2.1 percent) and medical care (3.2 percent), among others.

Table A. Philadelphia CPI-U 2-month and 12-month percent changes, all items index, not seasonally adjusted
Month 2016 2017 2018 2019 2020
2-month 12-month 2-month 12-month 2-month 12-month 2-month 12-month 2-month 12-month

February

0.3 0.3 0.7 2.1 0.4 0.5 0.8 1.5 1.0 2.6

April

0.9 0.6 0.0 1.3 0.9 1.4 1.3 1.9 -1.3 -0.1

June

0.3 0.1 -0.3 0.7 0.2 1.9 0.5 2.1 0.6 0.1

August

-0.2 0.4 0.5 1.4 0.3 1.7 0.5 2.3

October

0.6 1.3 0.0 0.8 0.0 1.6 -0.4 1.9

December

-0.1 1.7 -0.1 0.8 -0.7 1.0 -0.3 2.4

The Consumer Price Index for August 2020 is scheduled to be released Friday, September 11, 2020 at 8:30 am (ET).

Coronavirus (COVID-19) Pandemic Impact on June 2020 Consumer Price Index Data

Data collection by personal visit for the Consumer Price Index (CPI) program has been suspended since March 16, 2020. When possible, data normally collected by personal visit were collected either online or by phone. Additionally, data collection in June was affected by the temporary closing or limited operations of certain types of establishments. These factors resulted in an increase in the number of prices considered temporarily unavailable and imputed.

While the CPI program attempted to collect as much data as possible, many indexes are based on smaller amounts of collected prices than usual, and a small number of indexes that are normally published were not published this month. Additional information is available at www.bls.gov/covid19/effects-of-covid-19-pandemic-on-consumer-price-index.htm.


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 category Indexes Percent change from
Historical
data
Apr.
2020
May
2020
Jun.
2020
Jun.
2019
Apr.
2020
May
2020

All items

256.353   257.983 0.1 0.6  

All items (1967 = 100)

740.588   745.298      

Food and beverages

247.073   249.143 5.0 0.8  

Food

248.266   249.912 5.2 0.7  

Food at home

252.920 253.526 254.671 5.9 0.7 0.5

Cereals and bakery products

327.034   333.041 8.9 1.8  

Meats, poultry, fish, and eggs

284.276   297.807 12.6 4.8  

Dairy and related products

217.414   210.964 4.9 -3.0  

Fruits and vegetables

280.538   277.844 0.0 -1.0  

Nonalcoholic beverages and beverage materials(1)

162.962   167.259 6.8 2.6  

Other food at home

229.341   225.407 2.4 -1.7  

Food away from home

236.638   238.118 4.5 0.6  

Alcoholic beverages

226.835   235.409 1.7 3.8  

Housing

269.467   270.497 0.6 0.4  

Shelter

338.542 338.812 340.467 2.1 0.6 0.5

Rent of primary residence

317.499 315.729 316.667 2.6 -0.3 0.3

Owners' equivalent rent of residences(2)

348.840 349.086 351.601 3.3 0.8 0.7

Owners' equivalent rent of primary residence(2)

348.840 349.086 351.601 3.3 0.8 0.7

Fuels and utilities

203.716   202.892 -6.6 -0.4  

Household energy

163.492 161.058 162.727 -7.9 -0.5 1.0

Energy services

179.011 178.470 180.030 -4.1 0.6 0.9

Electricity

177.855 176.849 181.037 -1.3 1.8 2.4

Utility (piped) gas service

169.586 170.080 165.909 -9.2 -2.2 -2.5

Household furnishings and operations

115.743   115.511 -3.2 -0.2  

Apparel

103.217   100.976 -4.6 -2.2  

Transportation

195.070   200.284 -7.0 2.7  

Private transportation

196.799   201.663 -6.2 2.5  

New and used motor vehicles(3)

97.640   97.625 -2.0 0.0  

New vehicles(1)

174.320   174.854 -2.8 0.3  

Used cars and trucks(1)

257.994   253.189 -2.4 -1.9  

Motor fuel

195.937 190.171 204.322 -20.6 4.3 7.4

Gasoline (all types)

192.992 187.332 201.645 -20.6 4.5 7.6

Gasoline, unleaded regular(4)

189.323 183.919 197.968 -21.0 4.6 7.6

Gasoline, unleaded midgrade(4)(5)

207.208 198.147 212.952 -18.4 2.8 7.5

Gasoline, unleaded premium(4)

202.850 196.208 211.291 -17.3 4.2 7.7

Motor vehicle insurance(1)

617.242   692.479 -4.4 12.2  

Medical care

552.219   556.977 3.2 0.9  

Recreation(3)

125.139   125.300 0.8 0.1  

Education and communication(3)

132.942   132.397 0.5 -0.4  

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

1,055.951   1,055.577 1.2 0.0  

Other goods and services

553.826   552.226 0.3 -0.3  

Commodity and service group

Commodities

178.932   179.290 -1.6 0.2  

Commodities less food and beverages

142.877   142.508 -5.7 -0.3  

Nondurables less food and beverages

180.323   178.514 -7.9 -1.0  

Durables

100.943   101.604 -2.8 0.7  

Services

334.435   337.363 1.0 0.9  

Special aggregate indexes

All items less shelter

229.187   230.722 -0.9 0.7  

All items less medical care

243.844   245.342 -0.2 0.6  

Commodities less food

145.882   145.734 -5.4 -0.1  

Nondurables

214.557   214.641 -1.2 0.0  

Nondurables less food

183.075   181.836 -7.3 -0.7  

Services less rent of shelter(2)

337.546   341.586 -0.2 1.2  

Services less medical care services

318.142   320.882 0.6 0.9  

Energy

175.098 171.458 177.655 -13.7 1.5 3.6

All items less energy

266.930   268.496 1.2 0.6  

All items less food and energy

272.608   274.171 0.5 0.6  

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: Tuesday, July 14, 2020