Department of Labor Logo United States Department of Labor
Dot gov

The .gov means it's official.
Federal government websites often end in .gov or .mil. Before sharing sensitive information, make sure you're on a federal government site.

Https

The site is secure.
The https:// ensures that you are connecting to the official website and that any information you provide is encrypted and transmitted securely.

News Release Information

16-65-CHI
Wednesday, January 20, 2016

Contacts

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

Consumer Price Index, Milwaukee-Racine — Second Half 2015

Local prices down 0.3 percent over the year

The Consumer Price Index for All Urban Consumers (CPI-U) in the Milwaukee-Racine area declined 0.3 percent from the second half of 2014 to the second half of 2015, the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics reported today. Regional Commissioner Charlene Peiffer noted that the all items less food and energy index was 1.1 percent higher compared to its second half 2014 level as price increases were noted in the categories for shelter, recreation, and medical care. Food prices rose 0.8 percent over the year while the index for energy decreased 14.5 percent. (See chart 1.)

Food

The 0.8 percent rise in food prices over the year was attributed to both a 0.9 percent increase in costs for food eaten away from home (restaurant, cafeteria, and vending purchases) and a 0.6 percent increase in costs for grocery food items. In the previous annual period (second half 2013 to second half 2014), food prices in the Milwaukee area rose 2.0 percent.

Energy

Gasoline prices were down 21.3 percent from their second half 2014 levels and costs for utility (piped) gas service fell 18.3 percent in the same period, both contributing to the 14.5 percent drop in energy prices over the year. Electricity costs, on-the-other-hand, rose 0.5 percent compared to their second half 2014 levels. In the previous annual period, energy costs were nearly unchanged (-0.1 percent).

All items less food and energy

The 1.1 percent over the year increase in the all items less food and energy index was primarily due to a 2.6 percent annual gain in shelter costs. Recreation (2.1 percent) and medical care (1.1 percent) also experienced increases and contributed to the rise in the all items less food and energy index.

The first half 2016 Consumer Price Index for Milwaukee-Racine is scheduled to be released on Friday, July 15, 2016.


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 6,000 housing units and approximately 24,000 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 Milwaukee-Racine, Wis., consolidated area covered in this release is comprised of Milwaukee, Ozaukee, Racine, Washington, and Waukesha Counties 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 for semiannual averages and percent changes for selected periods

Milwaukee-Racine, WI (1982-84=100 unless otherwise noted)
Item and Group

 
Semiannual average indexes
 
Percent change to
2nd half 2015 from-
2nd half
2014
1st half
2015
2nd half
2015
2nd half
2014
1st half
2015

Expenditure category

 
 

All Items

227.634226.220226.984-0.30.3

All items (1967=100)

703.074698.704701.066--

Food and beverages

246.447246.551248.7020.90.9

Food

250.933251.090252.9640.80.7

Food at home

247.484246.293248.9950.61.1

Food away from home

257.135259.030259.5410.90.2

Alcoholic beverages

203.922203.507208.3582.22.4

Housing

210.342211.854213.2621.40.7

Shelter

254.004257.408260.7162.61.3

Rent of primary residence (1)

237.544239.683241.2571.60.7

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

270.185273.591278.0252.91.6

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

270.185273.591278.0252.91.6

Fuels and utilities

215.975212.012208.419-3.5-1.7

Household energy

180.209173.468169.387-6.0-2.4

Energy services (1)

184.790178.310174.593-5.5-2.1

Electricity (1)

215.093212.489216.1950.51.7

Utility (piped) gas service (1)

128.822118.049105.286-18.3-10.8

Household furnishings and operations

97.67496.79795.644-2.1-1.2

Apparel

148.222143.504139.638-5.8-2.7

Transportation

200.973188.043187.955-6.50.0

Private transportation

194.467179.949180.048-7.40.1

Motor fuel

286.926219.746225.426-21.42.6

Gasoline (all types)

282.549216.463222.241-21.32.7

Gasoline, unleaded regular (3)

284.403216.045219.801-22.71.7

Gasoline, unleaded midgrade (3) (4)

301.664234.862244.856-18.84.3

Gasoline, unleaded premium (3)

256.634203.418217.561-15.27.0

Medical care

483.239486.551488.7331.10.4

Recreation (5)

115.694116.796118.1722.11.2

Education and communication (5)

152.817154.216152.723-0.1-1.0

Other goods and services

384.786388.370389.6601.30.3
 

Commodity and service group

 
 

All Items

227.634226.220226.984-0.30.3

Commodities

184.130178.022177.558-3.6-0.3

Commodities less food & beverages

155.273146.998145.558-6.3-1.0

Nondurables less food & beverages

216.428199.014198.575-8.2-0.2

Durables

100.59999.84797.689-2.9-2.2

Services

269.075272.379274.3662.00.7
 

Special aggregate indexes

 
 

All items less medical care

216.403214.774215.476-0.40.3

All items less shelter

220.025216.829216.676-1.5-0.1

Commodities less food

157.211149.188147.960-5.9-0.8

Nondurables

233.318223.761224.515-3.80.3

Nondurables less food

215.291199.124199.070-7.50.0

Services less rent of shelter (2)

298.545301.813302.3431.30.2

Services less medical care services

252.194255.314257.3102.00.8

Energy

229.022195.626195.796-14.50.1

All items less energy

229.855231.527232.3581.10.4

All items less food and energy

227.228229.157229.8191.10.3

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 November 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.
 

 

Last Modified Date: Wednesday, January 20, 2016