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News Release Information

15-499-NEW
Tuesday, March 24, 2015

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Consumer Price Index, New York-Northern New Jersey – February 2015

Area prices up 0.3 percent over the month and 0.1 percent over the year

Prices in the New York-Northern New Jersey-Long Island area, as measured by the Consumer Price Index for All Urban Consumers (CPI-U), rose 0.3 percent in February after inching up 0.1 percent in January, the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics reported today. Chief Regional Economist Martin Kohli attributed the advance to rising prices in all three broad categories—food, energy, and all other items. (Data in this report are not seasonally adjusted. Accordingly, month-to-month changes may reflect the impact of seasonal influences.)

Over the year, the CPI-U ticked up 0.1 percent after dropping 0.5 percent in January. (See chart 1 and table A.) The all items less food and energy index increased 1.5 percent. (See table 1.) In both indexes, the 12-month rise was largely driven by higher prices for shelter.

Food

The food index edged up 0.2 percent in February, largely due to a rise in prices for food away from home. Away-from-home food prices, which had been unchanged during the two prior months, increased 0.3 percent. Prices for food at home ticked up 0.1 percent for the second consecutive month. Within the at-home food component, higher prices were reported for ham and non-chicken poultry, including turkey.

From February 2014 to February 2015, the food index increased 3.1 percent. Prices for food at home rose 3.2 percent, and prices for food away from home increased 3.0 percent.

Energy

After seven consecutive one-month declines, the energy index rose 1.5 percent. The upturn was primarily attributable to a 5.7-percent increase in electricity charges, which had jumped 7.3 percent in January. The last time prices for electricity advanced by more than 5.0 percent during two consecutive months was during the summer of 2001. In contrast, prices for natural gas dropped 2.5 percent, and prices for gasoline decreased 1.2 percent. The February decline in gasoline prices marks the eighth straight drop, the longest string of reductions since 1987.

Over the year, the energy index fell 19.3 percent. Prices for gasoline fell 35.1 percent, and prices for natural gas dropped 20.0 percent; for both series, these were the largest 12-month declines posted since 2009. In contrast, electricity prices advanced 6.2 percent.

All items less food and energy

The index for all items less food and energy increased 0.3 percent, after a 0.6-percent rise in January. Apparel prices, often up at this time of year, rose 3.7 percent. Shelter prices, including residential rent, edged up 0.2 percent. Medical care prices increased 0.3 percent, following increases of at least 0.5 percent in each of the three prior months. No other index grouping recorded an increase greater than 0.1 percent.

For the year ended February 2015, the index for all items less food and energy advanced 1.5 percent. Prices for shelter increased 2.3 percent, and residential rent rose 3.1 percent. Higher prices were also recorded for medical care (3.7 percent) and for apparel (4.5 percent).

Table A. New York-Northern New Jersey-Long Island CPI-U 1-month and 12-month percent changes (not seasonally adjusted)
Month201020112012201320142015
1-month12-month1-month12-month1-month12-month1-month12-month1-month12-month1-month12-month

January

0.22.40.31.50.42.80.52.20.91.90.1-0.5

February

0.01.80.52.10.42.60.62.4-0.21.10.30.1

March

0.52.10.72.30.62.60.11.90.41.3  

April

0.22.10.42.50.22.4-0.21.40.01.6  

May

0.22.20.62.90.11.80.11.40.51.9  

June

-0.11.50.23.2-0.11.60.31.80.01.7  

July

0.11.50.33.3-0.21.10.22.10.11.6  

August

0.21.40.43.50.61.40.11.7-0.21.3  

September

0.01.20.23.80.41.60.31.60.01.0  

October

0.21.5-0.23.3-0.11.7-0.61.1-0.21.3  

November

0.01.3-0.33.00.02.00.11.2-0.40.8  

December

0.01.4-0.42.7-0.32.10.01.5-0.50.3  

CPI-W

In February, the Consumer Price Index for Urban Wage Earners and Clerical Workers (CPI-W) was 254.044, up 0.3 percent over the month. The CPI-W decreased 0.3 percent over the year.

The March 2015 Consumer Price Index for New York-Northern New Jersey-Long Island is scheduled to be released Friday, April 17, 2015, at 8:30 a.m. (ET).


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 New York-Northern New Jersey-Long Island, N.Y.-N.J.-Conn.-Pa. consolidated area covered in this release is comprised of Bronx, Dutchess, Kings, Nassau, New York, Orange, Putnam, Queens, Richmond, Rockland, Suffolk, and Westchester Counties in New York State; Bergen, Essex, Hudson, Hunterdon, Mercer, Middlesex, Monmouth, Morris, Ocean, Passaic, Somerset, Sussex, Union, and Warren Counties in New Jersey; Fairfield County and parts of Litchfield, Middlesex, and New Haven Counties in Connecticut; and Pike County in Pennsylvania.

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, New York-Northern N.J.-Long Island, NY-NJ-CT-PA (1982-84=100 unless otherwise noted)(not seasonally adjusted)
Item and GroupIndexesPercent change from-
Dec.
2014
Jan.
2015
Feb.
2015
Feb.
2014
Dec.
2014
Jan.
2015
 

Expenditure category

 
 

All items

258.080258.376259.2400.10.40.3

All items (1967=100)

746.075746.929749.427   
 

Food and beverages

254.535254.693255.0843.00.20.2

Food

254.599254.757255.1433.10.20.2

Food at home

254.284254.533254.6653.20.10.1

Food away from home

261.767261.803262.5493.00.30.3

Alcoholic beverages

249.137249.294249.7701.00.30.2
 

Housing

275.669277.285278.4641.11.00.4

Shelter

343.223344.560345.3262.30.60.2

Rent of primary residence (1)

353.288353.748354.4473.10.30.2

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

350.289351.598352.1152.10.50.1

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

349.995351.300351.8072.10.50.1

Fuels and utilities

190.016194.972200.293-5.65.42.7

Household energy

183.641189.154195.143-6.76.33.2

Energy services (1)

171.750180.786187.300-1.69.13.6

Electricity (1)

183.943197.380208.7206.213.55.7

Utility (piped) gas service (1)

141.971141.713138.131-20.0-2.7-2.5

Household furnishings and operations

114.892115.079114.639-2.8-0.2-0.4
 

Apparel

120.119125.480130.1434.58.33.7
 

Transportation

216.635209.251209.192-8.9-3.40.0

Private transportation

204.095195.404194.813-10.4-4.5-0.3

Motor fuel

218.993182.559180.288-35.0-17.7-1.2

Gasoline (all types)

217.925181.612179.378-35.1-17.7-1.2

Gasoline, unleaded regular (3)

216.742179.757178.227-35.9-17.8-0.9

Gasoline, unleaded midgrade (3) (4)

229.577194.816188.485-32.6-17.9-3.2

Gasoline, unleaded premium (3)

228.559196.268190.029-31.0-16.9-3.2
 

Medical care

442.695445.916447.3193.71.00.3
 

Recreation (5)

118.468118.870119.039-0.90.50.1
 

Education and communication (5)

140.791141.080140.5390.2-0.2-0.4
 

Other goods and services

398.052402.181399.6610.40.4-0.6
 

Commodity and service group

 
 

All items

258.080258.376259.2400.10.40.3

Commodities

188.449186.596187.354-3.2-0.60.4

Commodities less food and beverages

147.231144.503145.400-7.9-1.20.6

Nondurables less food and beverages

184.530178.828180.643-10.7-2.11.0

Durables

99.09699.64199.524-2.10.4-0.1

Services

317.498319.497320.4601.70.90.3
 

Special aggregate indexes

 
 

All items less medical care

250.030250.213251.053-0.20.40.3

All items less shelter

224.630224.486225.401-1.30.30.4

Commodities less food

151.212148.550149.440-7.5-1.20.6

Nondurables

221.233218.283219.436-3.5-0.80.5

Nondurables less food

188.599183.193184.942-9.9-1.91.0

Services less rent of shelter (2)

300.214303.072304.2970.91.40.4

Services less medical care services

307.607309.528310.4271.50.90.3

Energy

199.698189.263192.180-19.3-3.81.5

All items less energy

265.547266.870267.5441.80.80.3

All items less food and energy

269.246270.787271.5181.50.80.3

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 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.
 

Note: Index applies to a month as a whole, not to any specific date.
The New York-Northern New Jersey-Long Island, NY-NJ-CT-PA consolidated area comprises the five boroughs of New York City, Nassau, Suffolk, Westchester, Rockland, Putnam, Dutchess, and Orange Counties in New York State; Bergen, Essex, Hudson, Hunterdon, Mercer, Monmouth, Middlesex, Morris, Ocean, Passaic, Somerset, Sussex, Union, and Warren Counties in New Jersey; Fairfield County and parts of Litchfield, New Haven, and Middlesex Counties in Connecticut; and Pike County in Pennsylvania.
 

 

Last Modified Date: Tuesday, March 24, 2015