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News Release Information

15-31-CHI
Friday, January 16, 2015

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Technical information:
Media contact:
  • (312) 353-1138

Consumer Price Index, Chicago-Gary-Kenosha - December 2014

The Consumer Price Index for All Urban Consumers (CPI-U) in the Chicago-Gary-Kenosha area decreased 0.4 percent in December, the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics reported today. Regional Commissioner Charlene Peiffer noted that energy prices fell 2.9 percent while food prices edged down 0.1 percent in December. The all items less food and energy index declined 0.2 percent over the month. Among the indexes within the all items less food and energy index, prices were lower for apparel, education and communication, and shelter in December. (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 Chicago area all items CPI-U increased 1.5 percent. (See chart 1 and table A.) The energy index fell 2.3 percent over the year as falling gasoline prices surpassed increases in the cost of electricity and utility (piped) gas service. The all items less food and energy index was 1.3 percent higher over the year. (See table 1.)

Food

Food prices edged down 0.1 percent in December following a 0.2 percent increase in November. Of the two components within the food index, prices for food at home (groceries) were unchanged and prices for food away from home (restaurant, cafeteria, and vending purchases) fell 0.2 percent over the month. Within the food at home group, categories experiencing decreases included lettuce, citrus fruits, and carbonated drinks. Prices were higher for ice cream and related products, eggs, and ham.

From December 2013 to December 2014, the food index increased 4.6 percent. Grocery food prices rose 4.6 percent over the year, while prices for food eaten away from home increased 4.7 percent compared to last December.

Energy

The energy index was down 2.9 percent in December due to a 14.0 percent decline in gasoline prices. In contrast, the electricity index rose 12.0 percent and utility (piped) gas service costs increased 5.2 percent from November to December.

On an annual basis, the Chicago area energy index declined 2.3 percent. Over the year, gasoline prices fell 20.7 percent, while the indexes for electricity and utility (piped) gas service rose 32.9 percent and 9.4 percent, respectively.

All items less food and energy

The index for all items less food and energy decreased 0.2 percent in December. Among the index’s components, prices were 2.0 percent lower for apparel. Contributing to December’s decrease, but to a lesser extent, education and communication decreased 0.4 percent and the heavily weighted shelter index edged down 0.1 percent.

Over the year, the index for all items less food and energy increased 1.3 percent. Annual increases in the indexes for shelter (2.2 percent), medical care (2.8 percent), and education and communication (2.2 percent) were the major contributing factors.

Table A. Percent Changes in the CPI-U, Chicago-Gary-Kenosha (not seasonally adjusted)
Expenditure CategoryPercent changes from preceding month12 mo. ended Dec. '14
2014
Jun.Jul.Aug.Sep.Oct.Nov.Dec.

All items

0.4-0.40.10.0-0.4-0.8-0.41.5

Food & beverages

-0.1-0.10.50.60.40.2-0.24.2

Food

-0.10.00.40.60.40.2-0.14.6

Housing

0.70.4-0.1-0.2-0.3-0.50.83.6

Apparel

-2.6-3.74.30.2-1.6-3.4-2.0-2.0

Transportation

1.2-2.9-1.5-0.3-2.3-2.5-4.5-6.6

Medical care

-0.20.60.30.11.0-0.40.32.8

Recreation

0.20.20.0-0.90.1-1.30.4-0.4

Education & communication

0.2-0.10.50.90.1-0.3-0.42.2

Other goods & services

0.40.10.00.3-0.2-0.6-0.1-0.4
 

Special Indexes

 

Energy

3.8(R)-3.2-3.0-1.4-6.4-7.2-2.9-2.3

All items less food & energy

0.1-0.20.40.10.2-0.3-0.21.3

Footnotes:
(R) Revised.
 

The January 2015 Consumer Price Index for Chicago is scheduled to be released on Thursday, February 26, 2015, at 7:30 a.m. (CT).


Technical Note

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 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/homch17_a.htm.

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 Chicago-Gary-Kenosha, Ill.-Ind.-Wis. consolidated area covered in this release is comprised of Cook, DeKalb, DuPage, Grundy, Kane, Kankakee, Kendall, Lake, McHenry, and Will Counties in Illinois; Lake and Porter Counties in Indiana; and Kenosha County in Wisconsin.

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

Chicago-Gary-Kenosha, IL-IN-WI (1982-84=100 unless otherwise noted)
Item and Group

 
Indexes
 
Percent change from-
Oct.
2014
Nov.
2014
Dec.
2014
Dec.
2013
Oct.
2014
Nov.
2014

Expenditure category

 
 

All items

228.987227.184226.2621.5-1.2-0.4

All items (1967=100)

684.116678.730675.977---

Food and beverages

239.670240.189239.6964.20.0-0.2

Food

239.050239.473239.2904.60.1-0.1

Food at home

238.639238.386238.4234.6-0.10.0

Food away from home

234.207235.579235.0884.70.4-0.2

Alcoholic beverages

247.128249.069244.012-1.2-1.3-2.0

Housing

230.478229.412231.1943.60.30.8

Shelter

283.879284.083283.7842.20.0-0.1

Rent of primary residence (1)

300.655301.479301.3813.00.20.0

Owners' equiv. rent of residences (1) (2)

289.171289.805289.9971.70.30.1

Owners' equiv. rent of primary residence (1) (2)

289.171289.805289.9971.70.30.1

Fuels and utilities

202.809194.224208.15117.82.67.2

Household energy

172.186163.069177.34421.03.08.8

Energy services (1)

175.433166.012180.83921.53.18.9

Electricity (1)

169.367150.964169.04632.9-0.212.0

Utility (piped) gas service (1)

167.320171.207180.1389.47.75.2

Household furnishings and operations

97.50097.43697.701-1.10.20.3

Apparel

94.12190.88489.021-2.0-5.4-2.0

Transportation

195.023190.087181.549-6.6-6.9-4.5

Private transportation

191.902187.081178.718-6.6-6.9-4.5

Motor fuel

296.760270.133232.615-20.6-21.6-13.9

Gasoline (all types)

293.546267.032229.771-20.7-21.7-14.0

Gasoline, unleaded regular (3)

286.684260.592223.141-21.2-22.2-14.4

Gasoline, unleaded midgrade (3) (4)

313.959285.394250.433-18.0-20.2-12.3

Gasoline, unleaded premium (3)

293.021268.627236.445-17.4-19.3-12.0

Medical care

456.734455.082456.4592.8-0.10.3

Recreation (5)

109.118107.683108.077-0.4-1.00.4

Education and communication (5)

143.703143.298142.6642.2-0.7-0.4

Other goods and services

384.759382.445381.911-0.4-0.7-0.1
 

Commodity and service group

 
 

All items

228.987227.184226.2621.5-1.2-0.4

Commodities

173.001170.358167.390-1.4-3.2-1.7

Commodities less food & beverages

138.343134.408130.456-5.4-5.7-2.9

Nondurables less food & beverages

186.568178.573170.381-7.0-8.7-4.6

Durables

92.21992.12592.185-2.60.00.1

Services

282.035281.023282.0323.10.00.4
 

Special aggregate indexes

 
 

All items less medical care

219.246217.434216.4091.4-1.3-0.5

All items less shelter

210.672208.150207.0041.1-1.7-0.6

Commodities less food

142.448138.639134.624-5.2-5.5-2.9

Nondurables

214.430210.408205.796-1.1-4.0-2.2

Nondurables less food

190.943183.438175.366-6.6-8.2-4.4

Services less rent of shelter (2)

294.829292.484294.9354.10.00.8

Services less medical care services

268.785267.713268.6933.20.00.4

Energy

220.273204.366198.467-2.3-9.9-2.9

All items less energy

231.621231.150230.6961.8-0.4-0.2

All items less food and energy

231.092230.454229.9481.3-0.5-0.2

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) Index is on a December 1982=100 base.
(3) Special index based on a substantially smaller sample.
(4) Indexes on a December 1993=100 base.
(5) Indexes on a December 1997=100 base.
 

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

 

Last Modified Date: Friday, January 16, 2015