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News Release Information

21-352-CHI
Wednesday, March 10, 2021

Contacts

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

Consumer Price Index, Chicago-Naperville-Elgin — February 2021

Area prices were up 0.6 percent over the past month, up 1.2 percent from a year ago

Prices in the Chicago-Naperville-Elgin area, as measured by the Consumer Price Index for All Urban Consumers (CPI-U), advanced 0.6 percent in February, the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics reported today.  Regional Commissioner Jason Palmer noted that the food index increased 0.5 percent, and the energy index rose 4.2 percent in February. The all items less food and energy index increased 0.3 percent in February. Among the indexes within the all items less food and energy category, prices were higher for recreation, household furnishings and operations, and apparel. (Data in this report are not seasonally adjusted. Accordingly, month-to-month changes may reflect seasonal influences.)

Over the last 12 months, the CPI-U rose 1.2 percent. (See chart 1 and table A.) Food prices rose 5.5 percent. The index for all items less food and energy rose 0.5 percent over the year. Energy prices increased 0.5 percent, largely the result of an increase in the price of utility (piped) gas service. (See table 1.)

Food

Food prices increased 0.5 percent for the month of February. Prices for food at home (groceries) decreased 1.0 percent, and prices for food away from home (restaurant, cafeteria, and vending purchases) increased 2.3 percent for the same period. Within the food at home group, indexes were lower in February for other fresh vegetables, lettuce, and frozen and freeze dried prepared foods.

Over the year, food prices rose 5.5 percent. Prices for food at home rose 3.4 percent since a year ago, and prices for food away from home advanced 8.1 percent.

Energy

The energy index rose 4.2 percent over the month. The increase was mainly due to higher prices for gasoline (7.7 percent). Prices for utility (piped) gas service increased 1.3 percent, and prices for electricity advanced 1.0 percent for the same period.

Energy prices increased 0.5 percent over the year, largely due to higher prices for utility (piped) gas service (8.0 percent). Prices paid for gasoline advanced 1.2 percent, while prices for electricity decreased 4.8 percent during the past year.

All items less food and energy

The index for all items less food and energy rose 0.3 percent in February. Higher prices for recreation (3.0 percent), household furnishings and operations (1.2 percent), and apparel (1.5 percent) were contributing factors.

Over the year, the index for all items less food and energy rose 0.5 percent. Components contributing to the increase included shelter (1.7 percent), new and used motor vehicles (2.5 percent), and recreation (2.6 percent). Partly offsetting the increases were price decreases in apparel (-4.7 percent) and motor vehicle insurance (-8.0 percent).

Table A. Chicago-Naperville-Elgin, IL-IN-WI, CPI-U 1-month and 12-month percent changes, all items index, not seasonally adjusted
Month20172018201920202021
1-month12-month1-month12-month1-month12-month1-month12-month1-month12-month

January

0.71.80.81.80.60.80.92.60.70.7

February

0.12.20.01.60.61.40.02.00.61.2

March

-0.12.00.01.80.11.5-0.71.1

April

0.41.70.72.1-0.10.8-0.90.3

May

0.21.80.42.30.81.21.00.4

June

0.01.3-0.22.2-0.41.00.31.1

July

0.02.2-0.31.90.31.60.21.0

August

0.32.30.11.70.21.60.11.0

September

0.42.10.41.60.21.40.61.4

October

-0.41.60.02.00.31.8-0.11.0

November

0.41.8-0.61.0-0.22.2-0.40.8

December

-0.41.7-0.31.1-0.22.2-0.20.9

The March 2021 Consumer Price Index for the Chicago-Naperville-Elgin area is scheduled to be released on Tuesday, April 13, 2021.

Coronavirus (COVID-19) Pandemic Impact on February 2021 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 February 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 Chicago-Naperville-Elgin, IL-IN-WI, Core Based Statistical Area covered in this release is comprised of Cook, DeKalb, DuPage, Grundy, Kane, Kendall, Lake, McHenry, and Will Counties in Illinois; Jasper, Lake, Newton, and Porter Counties in Indiana; and Kenosha County in Wisconsin.

Information in this release will be made available to individuals with sensory impairments 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-Naperville-Elgin, IL-IN-WI (1982-84=100 unless otherwise noted)
Item and Group

IndexesPercent change from-
Dec.
2020
Jan.
2021
Feb.
2021
Feb.
2020
Dec.
2020
Jan.
2021

Expenditure category

All items

244.235246.008247.3871.21.30.6

All items (1967=100)

729.673734.970739.089---

Food and beverages

265.590268.085269.5995.51.50.6

Food

265.459267.960269.3345.51.50.5

Food at home

247.226249.411247.0343.4-0.1-1.0

Cereals and bakery products

277.367280.160283.5855.42.21.2

Meats, poultry, fish and eggs

267.326264.775262.2221.3-1.9-1.0

Dairy and related products

224.876229.751228.3524.01.5-0.6

Fruits and vegetables

314.042322.852307.8160.4-2.0-4.7

Nonalcoholic beverages and beverage materials(1)

207.245208.695212.5816.12.61.9

Other food at home

198.202199.599198.0554.9-0.1-0.8

Food away from home

285.114288.005294.6498.13.32.3

Alcoholic beverages

265.835268.235271.5395.72.11.2

Housing

260.098260.496261.1111.50.40.2

Shelter

331.560332.383332.5201.70.30.0

Rent of primary residence(2)

354.001354.330355.0152.30.30.2

Owners' equiv. rent of residences(2)(3)

342.176343.037343.1872.20.30.0

Owners' equiv. rent of primary residence(2)(3)

342.176343.037343.1872.20.30.0

Fuels and utilities

209.972209.982211.7520.30.80.8

Household energy

161.384161.535163.304-0.11.21.1

Energy services(2)

164.653164.791166.578-0.11.21.1

Electricity(2)

162.431160.875162.441-4.80.01.0

Utility (piped) gas service(2)

154.471157.124159.0938.03.01.3

Household furnishings and operations

89.95589.53790.6261.10.71.2

Apparel

77.67581.31182.551-4.76.31.5

Transportation

176.894180.646183.848-1.33.91.8

Private transportation

178.651181.898185.2580.93.71.8

New and used motor vehicles(4)

98.91398.78099.2552.50.30.5

New vehicles(1)

174.468178.438178.9261.92.60.3

Used cars and trucks(1)

289.813287.743288.2789.4-0.50.2

Motor fuel

202.109218.179234.9161.216.27.7

Gasoline (all types)

200.005215.937232.6271.216.37.7

Gasoline, unleaded regular(5)

191.939207.432223.6541.216.57.8

Gasoline, unleaded midgrade(5)(6)

224.519240.008260.2611.815.98.4

Gasoline, unleaded premium(5)

227.023243.622258.6551.513.96.2

Motor vehicle insurance(1)

500.010508.159502.996-8.00.6-1.0

Medical care

533.028536.511533.5230.10.1-0.6

Recreation(4)

113.473114.161117.5972.63.63.0

Education and communication(4)

141.366141.344141.553-0.80.10.1

Tuition, other school fees, and childcare(1)

1,218.5951,220.4391,221.7041.00.30.1

Other goods and services

404.635405.674403.580-0.9-0.3-0.5

Commodity and service group

All items

244.235246.008247.3871.21.30.6

Commodities

168.208170.924172.6502.42.61.0

Commodities less food and beverages

121.736124.351126.0390.23.51.4

Nondurables less food and beverages

158.107163.620167.029-2.25.62.1

Durables

86.61587.17387.6253.11.20.5

Services

316.670317.316318.2450.50.50.3

Special aggregate indexes

All items less medical care

231.818233.519235.1101.31.40.7

All items less shelter

214.698216.779218.5631.01.80.8

Commodities less food

126.584129.218130.9630.43.51.4

Nondurables

211.258215.401217.9502.23.21.2

Nondurables less food

164.966170.304173.715-1.55.32.0

Services less rent of shelter(3)

316.882317.361319.193-0.80.70.6

Services less medical care services

299.653300.080301.3380.40.60.4

Energy

176.684183.197190.9380.58.14.2

All items less energy

252.556253.936254.7771.30.90.3

All items less food and energy

251.094252.275253.0220.50.80.3

Footnotes
(1) Index on a December 1977=100 base.
(2) This index series was calculated using a Laspeyres estimator. All other item stratum index series were calculated using a geometric means estimator.
(3) Index on a December 1982=100 base.
(4) Indexes on a December 1997=100 base.
(5) Special index based on a substantially smaller sample.
(6) Index on a December 1993=100 base.

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

 

Last Modified Date: Wednesday, March 10, 2021