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News Release Information

20-435-ATL
Wednesday, March 11, 2020

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Technical information:
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  • (404) 893-4220

Consumer Price Index, South Region – February 2020

Prices in the South up 0.2 percent over the month and 1.9 percent over the year

The Consumer Price Index for All Urban Consumers (CPI-U) for the South increased 0.2 percent in February, the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics reported today. Since January, the all items less food and energy index rose 0.4 percent and the food index edged up 0.2 percent. In contrast, the energy index declined 2.9 percent over the month. (Data in this report are not seasonally adjusted. Accordingly, month-to-month changes reflect the impact of seasonal influences.)

The all items CPI-U for the South increased 1.9 percent since February 2019. The all items less food and energy index rose 1.9 percent over the past year. The food and the energy indexes also increased over the year, up 1.4 percent and 1.8 percent, respectively. (See chart 1 and table 1.)

Food

The food index rose 0.2 percent in February, reflecting over-the-month increases in the food at home and the food away from home indexes, up 0.2 percent each.

The food index rose 1.4 percent for the 12 months ending February, led by a 2.3-percent increase in the food away from home index. The food at home index rose 0.6 percent over the last 12 months.  

Energy

The energy index fell 2.9 percent in February, led by a 5.5-percent drop in the gasoline index. The utility (piped) gas service index also declined in February, down 2.5 percent, while the electricity index was unchanged.    

The energy index rose 1.8 percent over the past 12 months, reflecting a 4.1-percent increase in the gasoline index. Since February 2019, the electricity and the utility (piped) gas service indexes declined, down 0.4 percent and 2.1 percent, respectively.

All items less food and energy

The index for all items less food and energy rose 0.4 percent in February. Several indexes increased over the month, most notably apparel (3.5 percent), shelter (0.3 percent), and new and used motor vehicles (0.4 percent).  

Since February 2019, the index for all items less food and energy advanced 1.9 percent, reflecting increases in the shelter (3.0 percent) and the medical care services (4.1 percent) indexes.

Geographic divisions

Additional price indexes are now available for the three divisions of the South. Over the month, the all items CPI-U increased in the South Atlantic and West South Central divisions, up 0.2 percent and 0.1 percent, respectively. The all items index in the East South Central division was unchanged in February.  

Over the year, the all items index advanced 2.2 percent in the South Atlantic division. The all items index rose 1.6 percent in the West South Central division and 1.0 percent in the East South Central division.

Table A. South region CPI-U 1-month and 12-month percent changes, all items index, not seasonally adjusted
Month2017201820192020
1-month12-month1-month12-month1-month12-month1-month12-month

January

0.52.60.51.80.21.20.32.3

February

0.22.80.62.10.51.10.21.9

March

0.02.20.22.30.71.6

April

0.22.00.42.40.51.8

May

0.01.70.32.7-0.11.4

June

0.21.50.22.7-0.11.1

July

-0.21.60.02.90.31.4

August

0.41.9-0.12.4-0.11.4

September

0.72.40.01.70.01.3

October

-0.22.00.22.10.21.3

November

-0.12.1-0.31.90.01.6

December

-0.11.8-0.51.50.02.1

The Consumer Price Index for March 2020 is scheduled to be released on Friday, April 10, 2020.


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-
Dec.
2019
Jan.
2020
Feb.
2020
Feb.
2019
Dec.
2019
Jan.
2020

Expenditure category

All Items

247.289248.005248.4121.90.50.2

All items (December 1977=100)

401.138402.298402.958---

Food and beverages

256.354257.296257.7951.40.60.2

Food

257.576258.570259.0241.40.60.2

Food at home

239.527240.809241.2290.60.70.2

Cereal and bakery products

280.214280.071281.4140.40.40.5

Meats, poultry, fish, and eggs

248.173247.533247.2911.9-0.4-0.1

Dairy and related products

222.108222.527223.8181.90.80.6

Fruits and vegetables

281.310286.252283.229-2.90.7-1.1

Nonalcoholic beverages and beverage materials

167.472170.384170.4850.31.80.1

Other food at home

210.370210.989213.1001.51.31.0

Food away from home

287.006287.598288.1072.30.40.2

Alcoholic beverages

238.943239.176240.2921.60.60.5

Housing

246.438247.349247.8152.60.60.2

Shelter

285.654286.674287.4763.00.60.3

Rent of primary residence

299.871300.887301.5583.60.60.2

Owners' equiv. rent of residences(1)

288.027288.886289.3473.10.50.2

Owners' equiv. rent of primary residence(1)

288.040288.902289.3603.10.50.2

Fuels and utilities

237.938238.495237.9610.20.0-0.2

Household energy

190.134190.264189.566-0.6-0.3-0.4

Energy services

190.225190.381189.692-0.6-0.3-0.4

Electricity

188.048188.198188.118-0.40.00.0

Utility (piped) gas service

188.995189.182184.500-2.1-2.4-2.5

Household furnishings and operations

125.034125.774125.7511.70.60.0

Apparel

129.315128.299132.851-2.32.73.5

Transportation

207.452207.755206.5991.4-0.4-0.6

Private transportation

206.548207.100205.2751.3-0.6-0.9

New and used motor vehicles(2)

100.868101.036101.455-0.50.60.4

New vehicles

152.124153.955154.1100.21.30.1

New cars and trucks(2)(3)

103.564104.814104.9260.21.30.1

New cars(3)

151.604153.055153.5110.01.30.3

Used cars and trucks

138.559137.395138.769-1.50.21.0

Motor fuel

210.672211.955200.4174.0-4.9-5.4

Gasoline (all types)

209.311210.572199.0374.1-4.9-5.5

Unleaded regular(3)

203.729204.955193.4134.1-5.1-5.6

Unleaded midgrade(3)(4)

234.729236.246224.5354.0-4.3-5.0

Unleaded premium(3)

233.899235.303225.2894.2-3.7-4.3

Motor vehicle insurance(5)

961.078962.096965.4230.80.50.3

Medical care

479.724481.849482.7053.00.60.2

Medical care commodities

352.266353.095353.282-1.40.30.1

Medical care services

522.899525.462526.5434.10.70.2

Professional services

366.873367.264367.5220.00.20.1

Recreation(2)

121.445121.506122.0650.80.50.5

Education and communication(2)

133.445133.885133.8691.20.30.0

Tuition, other school fees, and child care(5)

1,355.9341,358.4831,358.6352.60.20.0

Other goods and services

433.843436.000437.5941.70.90.4

Commodity and service group

All Items

247.289248.005248.4121.90.50.2

Commodities

183.096183.681183.6390.70.30.0

Commodities less food and beverages

149.092149.525149.2910.30.1-0.2

Nondurables less food and beverages

194.993195.344194.2991.1-0.4-0.5

Nondurables less food, beverages, and apparel

235.394236.495232.3922.2-1.3-1.7

Durables

106.677107.109107.364-0.70.60.2

Services

312.040312.883313.7662.60.60.3

Rent of shelter(1)

293.445294.537295.3553.10.70.3

Transportation services

362.239360.144364.8761.70.71.3

Other services

349.533350.520350.8521.50.40.1

Special aggregate indexes

All items less medical care

234.633235.275235.6581.80.40.2

All items less food

245.451246.123246.5231.90.40.2

All items less shelter

233.397233.998234.2551.30.40.1

Commodities less food

151.776152.205152.0030.30.1-0.1

Nondurables

223.988224.621224.3141.30.1-0.1

Nondurables less food

197.223197.567196.6521.2-0.3-0.5

Nondurables less food and apparel

234.527235.545231.9322.1-1.1-1.5

Services less rent of shelter(1)

345.237345.797346.7912.10.50.3

Services less medical care services

293.114293.816294.6772.40.50.3

Energy

195.400196.064190.3341.8-2.6-2.9

All items less energy

253.918254.643255.6651.80.70.4

All items less food and energy

253.692254.372255.4941.90.70.4

Commodities less food and energy commodities

144.884145.218146.333-0.51.00.8

Energy commodities

214.464215.720204.1793.8-4.8-5.3

Services less energy services

324.937325.851326.8982.80.60.3

Footnotes
(1) Indexes on a December 1982=100 base.
(2) Indexes on a December 1997=100 base.
(3) Special index based on a substantially smaller sample.
(4) Indexes on a December 1993=100 base.
(5) 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.

 

Last Modified Date: Wednesday, March 11, 2020