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21-63-PHI
Wednesday, January 13, 2021

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Consumer Price Index, Northeast Region – December 2020

Regional prices up 0.2 percent over the month; up 1.4 percent over the year

The Consumer Price Index for All Urban Consumers (CPI-U) in the Northeast edged up 0.2 percent in December, the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics reported today. Acting Regional Commissioner Frank Waligorski noted that the recent increase reflected a rise in the energy index, up 3.3 percent since November. The food index also increased over the month, up 0.8 percent, while the all items less food and energy index inched down 0.1 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 Northeast all items CPI-U increased 1.4 percent. (See chart 1 and table A.) This reflected an advance in the all items less food and energy index, up 1.6 percent. The food index also rose, up 4.0 percent, while the energy index fell 5.9 percent since December 2019. (See table 1.)

Food

The food index increased 0.8 percent since November. Prices were higher for both food away from home and food at home, up 0.9 and 0.6 percent, respectively.

From December 2019 to December 2020, the food index increased 4.0 percent. Prices for food at home increased over the year, up 3.8 percent; those for food away from home also rose, up 4.3 percent.

Energy

The energy index, which includes prices for household and transportation fuels, rose 3.3 percent in December, led by a 3.7-percent advance in gasoline prices. Prices were also higher for electricity (2.4 percent) and utility (piped) gas service (1.4 percent) over the month.

The energy index fell 5.9 percent since December 2019. The decrease reflected a drop in prices for gasoline (-12.8 percent). Prices for utility (piped) gas service also decreased over the year, down 0.1 percent, while those for electricity increased 3.7 percent.

All items less food and energy

The index for all items less food and energy inched down 0.1 percent over the month. Price decreases for new and used motor vehicles (-0.8 percent), apparel (-1.5 percent), and medical care (-0.3 percent) were moderated by higher prices for household furnishings and operations (1.9 percent) and other goods and services (1.5 percent).

The index for all items less food and energy increased 1.6 percent since December 2019, led by higher prices for shelter and new and used motor vehicles, up 1.9 and 3.6 percent, respectively. Prices also increased for recreation (2.0 percent) and education and communication (1.3 percent) over the year.

Table A. Northeast region CPI-U 1-month and 12-month percent changes, all items index, not seasonally adjusted
Month 2016 2017 2018 2019 2020
1-month 12-month 1-month 12-month 1-month 12-month 1-month 12-month 1-month 12-month

January

0.0 0.7 0.6 2.5 0.5 1.6 0.3 1.5 0.7 2.3

February

0.2 0.7 0.3 2.6 0.4 1.7 0.2 1.3 0.3 2.4

March

0.2 0.6 -0.1 2.2 0.1 2.0 0.5 1.7 -0.2 1.7

April

0.6 1.0 0.3 1.9 0.4 2.1 0.4 1.7 -0.4 0.8

May

0.3 0.9 0.1 1.7 0.4 2.5 0.3 1.5 0.0 0.6

June

0.2 0.7 0.0 1.5 0.0 2.6 0.1 1.6 0.3 0.8

July

0.0 0.8 -0.2 1.3 0.0 2.7 0.1 1.7 0.4 1.1

August

0.1 1.0 0.3 1.6 0.2 2.7 0.1 1.5 0.1 1.1

September

0.2 1.3 0.5 1.9 0.1 2.2 0.0 1.4 0.1 1.2

October

0.2 1.6 -0.1 1.5 -0.1 2.3 -0.1 1.5 -0.2 1.1

November

0.0 1.6 0.0 1.6 -0.4 1.9 0.1 1.9 0.1 1.1

December

0.0 1.9 0.1 1.7 -0.1 1.7 -0.1 1.9 0.2 1.4

Geographic divisions

Additional price indexes are now available for the two divisions of the Northeast. Over the month, the all items CPI-U increased in the New England division, up 0.3 percent, and the Middle Atlantic division, up 0.2 percent.

Over the year, prices rose in the Middle Atlantic division, up 1.6 percent. The all items index also rose in the New England division (0.8 percent). (See table B.)

 Table B. CPI-U 1-month and 12-month percent changes, all items index, Northeast region and divisions, not seasonally adjusted
Area 1-month change 12-month change

Northeast

0.2 1.4

New England Division

0.3 0.8

Middle Atlantic Division

0.2 1.6

The Consumer Price Index for January 2021 is scheduled to be released Wednesday, February 10, 2021, at 8:30 a.m. (ET).

Coronavirus (COVID-19) Pandemic Impact on December 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 December 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 (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 6,000 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 Northeast region is comprised of Connecticut, Maine, Massachusetts, New Hampshire, New Jersey, New York, Pennsylvania, Rhode Island, and Vermont.

The New England division is comprised of Connecticut, Maine, Massachusetts, New Hampshire, Rhode Island, and Vermont.

The Middle Atlantic division is comprised of New Jersey, New York, and Pennsylvania.

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, Northeast Region, (1982-84=100 unless otherwise noted) (not seasonally adjusted)
Expenditure category Indexes Percent change from
Historical
data
Oct.
2020
Nov.
2020
Dec.
2020
Dec.
2019
Oct.
2020
Nov.
2020

All items

273.374 273.543 274.225 1.4 0.3 0.2

All items (December 1977 = 100)

430.481 430.747 431.820      

Food and beverages

274.419 274.106 276.114 4.0 0.6 0.7

Food

275.072 274.706 276.795 4.0 0.6 0.8

Food at home

259.598 258.979 260.581 3.8 0.4 0.6

Cereals and bakery products

306.610 304.567 307.198 2.4 0.2 0.9

Meats, poultry, fish, and eggs

267.170 264.874 267.244 5.3 0.0 0.9

Dairy and related products

236.485 237.381 238.650 2.9 0.9 0.5

Fruits and vegetables

324.559 326.677 327.624 5.0 0.9 0.3

Nonalcoholic beverages and beverage materials

179.406 176.107 178.328 2.5 -0.6 1.3

Other food at home

229.788 230.672 231.179 3.1 0.6 0.2

Food away from home

301.677 301.705 304.570 4.3 1.0 0.9

Alcoholic beverages

264.979 265.376 266.296 3.9 0.5 0.3

Housing

292.539 293.678 294.992 1.9 0.8 0.4

Shelter

366.774 367.346 367.393 1.9 0.2 0.0

Rent of primary residence

371.893 372.793 372.690 1.8 0.2 0.0

Owners' equivalent rent of residences(1)

381.675 382.354 382.169 2.1 0.1 0.0

Owners' equivalent rent of primary residence(1)

381.338 382.014 381.840 2.1 0.1 0.0

Fuels and utilities

218.026 223.098 228.635 0.1 4.9 2.5

Household energy

188.983 194.052 199.844 -0.6 5.7 3.0

Energy services

193.263 198.393 202.564 2.5 4.8 2.1

Electricity

201.876 202.066 206.963 3.7 2.5 2.4

Utility (piped) gas service

162.305 176.489 178.959 -0.1 10.3 1.4

Household furnishings and operations

121.822 122.361 124.738 4.2 2.4 1.9

Apparel

121.984 118.008 116.236 -2.3 -4.7 -1.5

Transportation

199.317 199.860 199.557 -2.6 0.1 -0.2

Private transportation

193.363 193.422 194.078 -1.6 0.4 0.3

New and used motor vehicles(2)

99.427 99.684 98.922 3.6 -0.5 -0.8

New vehicles

143.979 144.085 145.750 2.1 1.2 1.2

New cars and trucks(2)(3)

99.803 99.839 100.998 2.1 1.2 1.2

New cars(3)

134.103 134.498 135.738 2.9 1.2 0.9

Used cars and trucks

161.126 159.067 157.746 10.1 -2.1 -0.8

Motor fuel

190.260 187.602 194.536 -12.8 2.2 3.7

Gasoline (all types)

189.295 186.622 193.555 -12.8 2.3 3.7

Gasoline, unleaded regular(3)

185.717 182.960 190.000 -13.3 2.3 3.8

Gasoline, unleaded midgrade(3)(4)

209.248 207.237 213.683 -10.3 2.1 3.1

Gasoline, unleaded premium(3)

206.906 204.989 210.700 -9.8 1.8 2.8

Motor vehicle insurance(5)

584.681 592.578 594.559 -5.5 1.7 0.3

Medical care

547.497 546.128 544.695 0.9 -0.5 -0.3

Medical care commodities

386.889 382.544 381.360 -4.1 -1.4 -0.3

Medical care services

594.428 594.004 592.502 2.0 -0.3 -0.3

Professional services

407.269 407.942 407.468 1.9 0.0 -0.1

Recreation(2)

128.903 129.333 129.070 2.0 0.1 -0.2

Education and communication(2)

149.003 148.692 148.572 1.3 -0.3 -0.1

Tuition, other school fees, and child care(5)

1,312.285 1,310.250 1,310.454 1.5 -0.1 0.0

Other goods and services

513.566 510.586 518.064 3.2 0.9 1.5

Commodity and service group

Commodities

190.542 189.784 191.377 1.0 0.4 0.8

Commodities less food and beverages

147.066 146.166 147.512 -1.1 0.3 0.9

Nondurables less food and beverages

184.416 182.728 183.736 -4.9 -0.4 0.6

Durables

103.297 103.044 104.450 3.9 1.1 1.4

Services

352.848 353.904 353.715 1.6 0.2 -0.1

Special aggregate indexes

All items less shelter

241.104 241.130 242.040 1.1 0.4 0.4

All items less medical care

261.283 261.522 262.300 1.5 0.4 0.3

Commodities less food

151.179 150.309 151.652 -0.9 0.3 0.9

Nondurables

228.694 227.662 229.158 0.1 0.2 0.7

Nondurables less food

189.142 187.579 188.581 -4.2 -0.3 0.5

Services less rent of shelter(1)

349.889 351.503 351.056 1.3 0.3 -0.1

Services less medical care services

336.204 337.361 337.263 1.5 0.3 0.0

Energy

189.574 191.517 197.774 -5.9 4.3 3.3

All items less energy

284.489 284.498 284.681 1.9 0.1 0.1

All items less food and energy

287.971 288.047 287.893 1.6 0.0 -0.1

Footnotes
(1) Indexes on a December 1982=100 base.
(2) Indexes on a December 1997=100 base.
(3) Special index based on a substantially smaller sample.
(4) Indexes on a December 1993=100 base.
(5) Indexes on a December 1977=100 base.

 

Last Modified Date: Wednesday, January 13, 2021