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17-1130-BOS
Friday, August 11, 2017

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Consumer Price Index, Boston-Brockton-Nashua — July 2017

Area prices edged up 0.1 percent over two months; up 2.2 percent from a year ago

The Consumer Price Index for All Urban Consumers (CPI-U) in the Boston-Brockton-Nashua area edged up 0.1 percent in July, the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics reported today. Regional Commissioner Deborah A. Brown noted that the two-month increase was mainly due to higher prices paid by area consumers for food, up 1.0 percent, and to a lesser extent, higher prices within all items less food and energy, up 0.1 percent. Energy prices, down 1.9 percent, almost entirely offset the 2-month increase. (Data in this report are not seasonally adjusted. Accordingly, bimonthly changes may reflect the impact of seasonal influences.)

Over the last 12 months, the Boston CPI-U rose 2.2 percent. The increase was largely attributable to higher prices within all items less food and energy, up 1.8 percent (See chart 1.). Higher energy prices paid by area consumers, up 7.2 percent also contributed to the increase and to a lesser extent, food prices, up 1.5 percent over the year, contributed also.

 

 

Food

Food prices edged up 1.0 percent since May mainly due to higher grocery store or food at home prices, up 0.9 percent. Restaurant prices, or food away from home, up 1.1 percent, also contributed to the increase.

Food prices increased 1.5 percent over the year, mainly due to higher restaurant prices, or food away from home, up 2.2 percent.  Grocery store prices edged up 1.2 percent, also contributing to the increase.

 

Energy

The energy index decreased 1.9 percent over the two months, mainly driven by lower gasoline prices down 3.2 percent. To a lesser extent, lower prices for electricity down 0.9 percent also contributed to the decrease. Higher prices for utility piped gas, up 1.9 percent partially offset the decrease.

Energy prices were up 7.2 percent from a year ago, largely attributable to higher electricity prices, up 9.7 percent. Higher prices for gasoline, up 4.0 percent, and utility (piped) gas up 11.0 percent, also contributed to the overall increase. 

 

All items less food and energy

The index for all items less food and energy edged up from May (0.1 percent).  The increase was mainly attributable to shelter up 1.0 percent. This was driven by higher prices for owners’ equivalent rent of residences, up 1.0 percent. Lower prices for apparel partially offset the increase, down 6.7 percent.

Over the year, the index for all items less food and energy rose 1.8 percent, with higher shelter costs being the main driver of the increase up 2.3 percent. Within shelter, higher costs for owners’ equivalent rent of residences, up 2.3 percent, led the increase. Higher recreation and other goods and services prices up 6.0 percent and 6.9 percent, respectively, also contributed to the overall increase.

CPI-W

In July, the Consumer Price Index for Urban Wage Earners and Clerical Workers (CPI-W) was 265.002. The CPI-W was up 0.1 percent over two months and increased 2.2 percent over the year.

The September 2017 Consumer Price Index for Boston-Brockton-Nashua is scheduled to be released on Friday, October 13, 2017, at 8:30 a.m. (ET).

Consumer Price Index Geographic Revision for 2018

In January 2018, BLS will introduce a new geographic area sample for the Consumer Price Index. As part of the new sample, the index for this area will be renamed. The first indexes using the new structure will be published in February 2018. Additional information on the geographic revision is available at: www.bls.gov/cpi/additional-resources/geographic-revision-2018.htm.


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 change 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 https://www.bls.gov/opub/hom/pdf/homch17.pdf

In calculating the index, price changes for the various items in each location are averaged together withweights 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 Boston-Brockton-Nashua, Mass.-N.H.-Maine-Conn. consolidated area covered in this release is comprised of Essex, Middlesex, Norfolk, Plymouth, Suffolk, Bristol, Hampden, and Worcester Counties in Massachusetts; Hillsborough, Merrimack, Rockingham, and Strafford Counties in New Hampshire; York County in Maine; and Windham County in Connecticut.

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.

Consumer Price Index for All Urban Consumers (CPI-U): Indexes and percent changes for selected periods, Boston-Brockton-Nashua, Ma.-N.H.-Maine-Conn., (1982-84=100 unless otherwise noted) (not seasonally adjusted)
Expenditure categoryIndexesPercent change from
 
Historical
data
May
2017
Jun.
2017
Jul.
2017
Jul.
2016
May
2017
Jun.
2017

All items

Go to web page with historical data for series CUURA103SA0
266.256 266.4292.20.1 

All items (1967 = 100)

Go to web page with historical data for series CUURA103AA0
773.880 774.382   
 

Food and beverages

Go to web page with historical data for series CUURA103SAF
259.428 261.3031.40.7 

Food

Go to web page with historical data for series CUURA103SAF1
260.444 262.9631.51.0 

Food at home

Go to web page with historical data for series CUURA103SAF11
246.542247.814248.7231.20.90.4

Food away from home

Go to web page with historical data for series CUURA103SEFV
284.485 287.6242.21.1 

Alcoholic beverages

Go to web page with historical data for series CUURA103SAF116
252.275 246.4280.0-2.3 
 

Housing

Go to web page with historical data for series CUURA103SAH
270.157 271.9612.80.7 

Shelter

Go to web page with historical data for series CUURA103SAH1
319.588321.591322.7422.31.00.4

Rent of primary residence(1)

Go to web page with historical data for series CUURA103SEHA
329.836331.388332.0772.70.70.2

Owners' equivalent rent of residences(1)(2)(3)

Go to web page with historical data for series CUURA103SEHC
339.191341.209342.4362.31.00.4

Owners' equivalent rent of primary residence(1)(2)(3)

Go to web page with historical data for series CUURA103SEHC01
339.191341.209342.4362.31.00.4

Fuels and utilities

Go to web page with historical data for series CUURA103SAH2
264.662 263.3519.2-0.5 

Household energy

Go to web page with historical data for series CUURA103SAH21
221.361220.479219.4329.5-0.9-0.5

Energy services(1)

Go to web page with historical data for series CUURA103SEHF
235.321236.436234.87810.1-0.2-0.7

Electricity(1)

Go to web page with historical data for series CUURA103SEHF01
277.650277.650275.2119.7-0.9-0.9

Utility (piped) gas service(1)

Go to web page with historical data for series CUURA103SEHF02
154.001156.959156.95911.01.90.0

Household furnishings and operations

Go to web page with historical data for series CUURA103SAH3
128.787 127.719-0.2-0.8 
 

Apparel

Go to web page with historical data for series CUURA103SAA
146.570 136.7261.9-6.7 
 

Transportation

Go to web page with historical data for series CUURA103SAT
188.169 185.671-0.1-1.3 

Private transportation

Go to web page with historical data for series CUURA103SAT1
186.794 184.3640.0-1.3 

Motor fuel

Go to web page with historical data for series CUURA103SETB
203.890198.133197.3304.0-3.2-0.4

Gasoline (all types)

Go to web page with historical data for series CUURA103SETB01
201.682195.895195.1354.0-3.2-0.4

Gasoline, unleaded regular(4)

Go to web page with historical data for series CUURA103SS47014
195.299189.443188.7514.0-3.4-0.4

Gasoline, unleaded midgrade(4)(5)

Go to web page with historical data for series CUURA103SS47015
214.388210.975209.4484.5-2.3-0.7

Gasoline, unleaded premium(4)

Go to web page with historical data for series CUURA103SS47016
214.517210.079209.0254.2-2.6-0.5
 

Medical care

Go to web page with historical data for series CUURA103SAM
635.502 639.1120.60.6 
 

Recreation(6)

Go to web page with historical data for series CUURA103SAR
124.428 124.0866.0-0.3 
 

Education and communication(6)

Go to web page with historical data for series CUURA103SAE
158.366 158.2041.2-0.1 
 

Other goods and services

Go to web page with historical data for series CUURA103SAG
474.681 482.5166.91.7 
 

Commodity and service group

 

Commodities

Go to web page with historical data for series CUURA103SAC
189.644 187.8850.5-0.9 

Commodities less food and beverages

Go to web page with historical data for series CUURA103SACL11
152.954 149.827-0.2-2.0 

Nondurables less food and beverages

Go to web page with historical data for series CUURA103SANL11
196.704 191.6341.2-2.6 

Durables

Go to web page with historical data for series CUURA103SAD
110.462 108.997-1.9-1.3 

Services

Go to web page with historical data for series CUURA103SAS
335.536 337.4913.00.6 
 

Special aggregate indexes

 

All items less shelter

Go to web page with historical data for series CUURA103SA0L2
248.025 247.0322.1-0.4 

All items less medical care

Go to web page with historical data for series CUURA103SA0L5
252.081 252.1282.30.0 

Commodities less food

Go to web page with historical data for series CUURA103SACL1
156.936 153.707-0.2-2.1 

Nondurables

Go to web page with historical data for series CUURA103SAN
227.137 225.3401.3-0.8 

Nondurables less food

Go to web page with historical data for series CUURA103SANL1
199.751 194.6451.1-2.6 

Services less rent of shelter(2)

Go to web page with historical data for series CUURA103SASL2RS
371.639 372.2333.80.2 

Services less medical care services

Go to web page with historical data for series CUURA103SASL5
314.894 316.7893.30.6 

Energy

Go to web page with historical data for series CUURA103SA0E
212.173209.178208.2457.2-1.9-0.4

All items less energy

Go to web page with historical data for series CUURA103SA0LE
275.211 275.7901.80.2 

All items less food and energy

Go to web page with historical data for series CUURA103SA0L1E
278.584 278.8331.80.1 

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) Indexes on a December 1982=100 base.
(3) This index series underwent a change in composition in January 2010. The expenditure class now includes weight from secondary residences, and has been re-titled "Owners' equivalent rent of residences." The item stratum "Owners' equivalent rent of primary residence" excludes secondary residences.
(4) Special index based on a substantially smaller sample.
(5) Indexes on a December 1993=100 base.
(6) Indexes on a December 1997=100 base.
 

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

 

Last Modified Date: Friday, August 11, 2017