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Wednesday, March 15, 2017


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Average Energy Prices In Boston-Brockton-Nashua – February 2017

Boston area households paid an average of $2.272 a gallon for gasoline in February 2017, the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics reported today. Regional Commissioner Deborah A. Brown noted that area gasoline prices were up 48.4 cents compared to last February’s when they averaged $1.788 per gallon. Utility (piped) gas prices averaged $1.352 per therm in the Boston area in February 2017. Area natural gas prices increased 18.5 cents from one year ago when they averaged $1.167 per therm.  The average cost of electricity at 20.1 cents per kilowatt hour (kWh) in February was similar to the 20.3 cents spent last year. (Data in this release are not seasonally adjusted; accordingly, over-the-year-analysis is used throughout.)

Boston area consumers paid $2.272 a gallon for gasoline which was similar to the national average of $2.36 in February 2017. One year ago, consumers in the Boston area paid $1.788 which was also similar to the national average of $1.833 for a gallon of gasoline. (See chart 1.) 


The 20.1 cents per kWh Boston households paid for electricity in February 2017 was 48.9 percent more than the nationwide average of 13.5 cents per kWh.  Last February, electricity costs were 51.5 percent higher in Boston compared to the nation. In each of the last five years, the price of electricity in Boston has exceeded that for the nation in the month of February, by 14.7 percent or more. (See chart 2.)

Prices paid by Boston area consumers for utility (piped) gas, commonly referred to as natural gas, were $1.352 per therm, 34.8 percent higher than the national average in February 2017 ($1.003 per therm).  In February of 2016 local prices were $1.167 per therm or 30.4 percent higher than those of the nation ($0.895). In each of the last five years, the price of utility (piped) gas in Boston has exceeded that for the nation in the month of February, by 25.9 percent or more.  (See chart 3.)


The Boston-Brockton-Nashua, Mass.-N.H.-Maine-Conn. consolidated area consists 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.

Technical Note

Average prices are estimated from Consumer Price Index (CPI) data for selected commodity series to support the research and analytic needs of CPI data users. Average prices for electricity, utility (piped) gas, and gasoline are published monthly for the U.S. city average, the 4 regions, the 3 population size classes, 10 region/size-class cross-classifications, and the 14 largest local index areas. For electricity, average prices per kilowatt-hour (kWh) are published. For utility (piped) gas, average prices per therm are published. For gasoline, the average price per gallon is published. Average prices for commonly available grades of gasoline are published as well as the average price across all grades.

All eligible prices are converted to a price per normalized quantity. These prices are then used to estimate a price for a defined fixed quantity.  The average price per kilowatt-hour represents the total bill divided by the kilowatt-hour usage. The total bill is the sum of all items applicable to all consumers appearing on an electricity bill including, but not limited to, variable rates per kWh, fixed costs, taxes, surcharges, and credits. This calculation also applies to the average price per therm for utility (piped) gas.

Information in this release will be made available to sensory impaired individuals upon request. Voice phone:  202-691-5200; Federal Relay Service: 1-800-877-8339.

Table 1. Average prices for gasoline, electricity, and utility (piped) gas, Boston-Brockton-Nashua and the United States, February 2016 - February 2017, not seasonally adjusted
Year and
Gasoline, all types,
per gallon
per kilowatt hour
Utility (piped) gas
per therm




1.788 1.833 0.203 0.134 1.167 0.895


1.907 2.021 0.205 0.134 1.117 0.884


2.138 2.196 0.205 0.134 1.117 0.879


2.261 2.324 0.197 0.133 0.925 0.877


2.300 2.422 0.188 0.138 1.006 0.891


2.195 2.287 0.186 0.139 1.041 0.931


2.135 2.218 0.186 0.139 1.041 0.943


2.15 2.269 0.187 0.139 1.155 0.954


2.198 2.304 0.19 0.134 1.155 0.961


2.186 2.246 0.195 0.131 1.344 0.97


2.245 2.289 0.195 0.133 1.315 0.972




2.317 2.409 0.201 0.134 1.314 1


2.272 2.36 0.201 0.135 1.352 1.003


Last Modified Date: Wednesday, March 15, 2017