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News Release Information

18-559-ATL
Wednesday, April 11, 2018

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Technical information:
Media contact:
  • (404) 893-4220

Consumer Price Index, South Region – March 2018

Prices in the South up 0.2 percent over the month and 2.3 percent over the year

The Consumer Price Index for All Urban Consumers (CPI-U) for the South edged up 0.2 percent in March, the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics reported today. The index for all items less food and energy increased 0.4 percent over the pricing period. The energy index decreased 1.0 percent in March, while the food index inched down 0.1 percent. (Data in this report are not seasonally adjusted. Accordingly, month-to-month changes may reflect the impact of seasonal influences.)

The all items CPI-U was up 2.3 percent for the 12 months ending March. The index for all items less food and energy increased 2.1 percent over the past year, while the energy index advanced 6.2 percent and the food index rose 1.0 percent. (See chart 1.)

Food

The food index inched down 0.1 percent in March. The index for food at home edged down 0.2 percent, led by a 2.3 percent decrease in the fruits and vegetables index. The index for food away from home was unchanged over the month.

Over the last 12 months, the food index rose 1.0 percent, reflecting increases in the indexes for food away from home (2.1 percent) and food at home (0.2 percent).

Energy

The energy index decreased 1.0 percent in March, led by a 1.1-percent decrease in the motor fuel index. The indexes for electricity and utility (piped) gas service were also down, declining 0.9 and 1.0 percent, respectively.

From March 2017—March 2018, the energy index advanced 6.2 percent, fueled by a 11.1-percent increase in the motor fuel index. The electricity index rose 1.1 percent and the index for utility (piped) gas service increased 3.1 percent over the last year.

All items less food and energy

In March 2018, the all items less food and energy index increased 0.4 percent, reflecting increases in the indexes for apparel (4.5 percent), shelter (0.4 percent), and medical care (0.2 percent). The index for education and communication edged down 0.3 percent over the month.

Since March 2017, the index for all items less food and energy advanced 2.1 percent. The shelter index contributed to the increase, up 3.3 percent over the year.

Table A. South region CPI-U 1-month and 12-month percent changes, all items index, not seasonally adjusted
Month20142015201620172018
1-month12-month1-month12-month1-month12-month1-month12-month1-month12-month

January

0.31.7-0.7-0.40.01.20.52.60.51.8

February

0.41.20.5-0.30.10.70.22.80.62.1

March

0.61.50.6-0.30.60.70.02.20.22.3

April

0.52.30.3-0.60.40.90.22.0

May

0.22.40.4-0.40.40.90.01.7

June

0.22.30.5-0.10.40.80.21.5

July

-0.12.0-0.1-0.1-0.20.7-0.21.6

August

-0.21.7-0.2-0.20.11.00.41.9

September

0.11.7-0.2-0.40.21.40.72.4

October

-0.31.60.0-0.10.11.5-0.22.0

November

-0.61.3-0.20.3-0.11.6-0.12.1

December

-0.60.6-0.40.50.12.0-0.11.8

The Consumer Price Index for April 2018 is scheduled to be released on Thursday, May 10, 2018.


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 93 percent of the total population and (2) a CPI for Urban Wage Earners and Clerical Workers (CPI-W) which covers 29 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 75 urban areas across the country from about 5,000 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 (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 South region is comprised of Alabama, Arkansas, Delaware, District of Columbia, Florida, Georgia, Kentucky, Louisiana, Maryland, Mississippi, North Carolina, Oklahoma, South Carolina, Tennessee, Texas, Virginia, and West Virginia.

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
South (1982-84=100 unless otherwise noted)
Item and Group

IndexesPercent change from-
Jan.
2018
Feb.
2018
Mar.
2018
Mar.
2017
Jan.
2018
Feb.
2018

Expenditure category

All Items

239.772241.123241.5952.30.80.2

All items (December 1977=100)

388.943391.135391.900---

Food and beverages

249.815249.475249.3241.0-0.2-0.1

Food

251.127250.710250.5191.0-0.2-0.1

Food at home

238.422237.191236.7890.2-0.7-0.2

Cereal and bakery products

279.047276.276275.995--1.1-0.1

Meats, poultry, fish, and eggs

241.320241.201243.739-1.01.1

Dairy and related products

219.988218.805218.319--0.8-0.2

Fruits and vegetables

289.347284.805278.388--3.8-2.3

Nonalcoholic beverages and beverage materials

166.650165.709166.521--0.10.5

Other food at home

209.633209.763209.307--0.2-0.2

Food away from home

272.970273.685273.7872.10.30.0

Alcoholic beverages

231.076231.864232.2961.10.50.2

Housing

235.071235.746236.0832.80.40.1

Shelter

270.413270.759271.7423.30.50.4

Rent of primary residence(1)

281.731282.086282.6953.80.30.2

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

272.487272.713273.3983.20.30.3

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

272.479272.703273.3923.20.30.3

Fuels and utilities

234.824236.851235.1111.80.1-0.7

Household energy

189.383191.430189.5941.60.1-1.0

Energy services(1)

189.240191.340189.5031.40.1-1.0

Electricity(1)

186.609188.321186.5371.10.0-0.9

Utility (piped) gas service(1)

191.208195.804193.7673.11.3-1.0

Household furnishings and operations

121.071121.962121.505-0.20.4-0.4

Apparel

128.360134.086140.1712.59.24.5

Transportation

206.288208.883208.9134.01.30.0

Private transportation

205.340207.748207.5474.31.1-0.1

New and used motor vehicles(3)

101.344101.619102.107-0.60.80.5

New vehicles

153.484153.431153.371-1.1-0.10.0

New cars and trucks(3)(4)

104.496104.446104.409-1.1-0.10.0

New cars(4)

152.796152.819152.811-1.70.00.0

Used cars and trucks

137.686138.808140.9190.62.31.5

Motor fuel

214.278218.976216.54811.11.1-1.1

Gasoline (all types)

213.005217.679215.29711.11.1-1.1

Unleaded regular(4)

207.758212.431209.96311.11.1-1.2

Unleaded midgrade(4)(5)

236.213240.797238.91610.81.1-0.8

Unleaded premium(4)

234.324238.486237.09810.31.2-0.6

Motor vehicle insurance(6)

919.295944.961941.693-2.4-0.3

Medical care

461.691464.905465.8881.80.90.2

Medical care commodities

369.046369.817370.8071.20.50.3

Medical care services

492.724496.783497.7621.91.00.2

Professional services

357.919362.951366.287-0.32.30.9

Recreation(3)

116.802118.011118.2090.51.20.2

Education and communication(3)

132.601132.438132.027-0.2-0.4-0.3

Tuition, other school fees, and child care(6)

1,301.2061,303.1531,295.109--0.5-0.6

Other goods and services

425.261424.495424.1111.5-0.3-0.1

Commodity and service group

All Items

239.772241.123241.5952.30.80.2

Commodities

182.220183.375183.8441.40.90.3

Commodities less food and beverages

150.214151.831152.4911.51.50.4

Nondurables less food and beverages

196.795200.123201.3513.92.30.6

Nondurables less food, beverages, and apparel

238.680240.880239.6404.40.4-0.5

Durables

107.269107.666107.910-1.30.60.2

Services

297.560299.100299.5692.80.70.2

Rent of shelter(2)

277.642278.005279.0273.30.50.4

Transportation services

350.383357.151357.7975.12.10.2

Other services

338.585339.548339.2831.00.2-0.1

Special aggregate indexes

All items less medical care

227.671228.924229.3682.40.70.2

All items less food

237.785239.397239.9662.50.90.2

All items less shelter

228.784230.519230.7991.80.90.1

Commodities less food

152.706154.313154.9711.51.50.4

Nondurables

221.959223.612224.2102.41.00.3

Nondurables less food

198.525201.721202.9083.72.20.6

Nondurables less food and apparel

236.934239.013237.9094.10.4-0.5

Services less rent of shelter(2)

331.864334.884334.6982.30.9-0.1

Services less medical care services

279.967281.300281.7262.90.60.2

Energy

196.789200.074197.9966.20.6-1.0

All items less energy

245.370246.506247.2682.00.80.3

All items less food and energy

244.776246.177247.1012.10.90.4

Commodities less food and energy commodities

145.423146.619147.722-0.31.60.8

Energy commodities

218.279222.963220.49911.11.0-1.1

Services less energy services

308.995310.471311.1932.90.70.2

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) Indexes on a December 1997=100 base.
(4) Special index based on a substantially smaller sample.
(5) Indexes on a December 1993=100 base.
(6) Indexes on a December 1977=100 base.

- Data not available.
Regions defined as the four Census regions. South includes Alabama, Arkansas, Delaware, District of Columbia, Florida, Georgia, Kentucky, Louisiana, Maryland, Mississippi, North Carolina, Oklahoma, South Carolina, Tennessee, Texas, Virginia, and West Virginia.
NOTE: Index applies to a month as a whole, not to any specific date. Data not seasonally adjusted.

 

Last Modified Date: Wednesday, April 11, 2018