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17-337-ATL
Wednesday, March 15, 2017

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Consumer Price Index, Atlanta – February 2017

Area prices up 1.2 percent over the two months and 3.5 percent over the year

The Consumer Price Index for All Urban Consumers (CPI-U) for Atlanta advanced 1.2 percent over the January-February pricing period, the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics reported today. Regional Commissioner Janet S. Rankin noted that the all items less food and energy index increased 1.5 percent and the energy index edged up 0.2 percent. The food index was unchanged during the January-February pricing period. (Data in this report are not seasonally adjusted. Accordingly, month-to-month changes may reflect the impact of seasonal influences.)

Over the last 12 months, the all items CPI-U increased 3.5 percent. The index for all items less food and energy also advanced 3.5 percent over the year reflecting price increases for shelter and medical care. (See chart 1 and table 1.)

Food

The food index was unchanged during the January-February pricing period. A 0.3-percent rise in the food at home index was largely offset by a 0.3-percent decline in food away from home index.

Over the year, the food index decreased 0.7 percent, reflecting a 2.5-percent decline in the food at home index. Since February 2016, the food away from home index advanced 1.7 percent.

Energy

The energy index edged up 0.2 percent during the January-February pricing period. Over the two months, the indexes for utility (piped) gas service and electricity increased 1.6 and 0.5 percent, respectively. In contrast, the index for motor fuel declined 0.5 percent.

Over the year, the energy index advanced 13.1 percent, led by a 31.0-percent sharp rise in motor fuel prices—its largest 12-month increase since September 2011. Since February 2016, utility (piped) gas service prices rose 11.1 percent, while electricity prices fell 3.5 percent.

All items less food and energy

The index for all items less food and energy increased 1.5 percent during the January-February pricing period as increases were recorded for shelter (1.2 percent), medical care (3.4 percent), and apparel (3.8 percent).

From February 2016 to February 2017, the index for all items less food and energy advanced 3.5 percent—led by increases for shelter (5.5 percent) and medical care (7.4 percent).

Table A. Atlanta CPI-U 2-month and 12-month percent changes, all items index, not seasonally adjusted
Month 2013 2014 2015 2016 2017
2-month 12-month 2-month 12-month 2-month 12-month 2-month 12-month 2-month 12-month

February

1.9 2.1 1.3 1.8 0.0 -0.3 0.3 1.6 1.2 3.5

April

0.1 1.1 0.8 2.5 0.7 -0.5 1.0 1.9    

June

1.0 1.4 1.5 3.0 2.5 0.6 1.3 0.7    

August

0.7 1.5 -0.1 2.2 -0.1 0.6 0.5 1.2    

October

-1.0 1.6 -1.1 2.2 -1.2 0.5 -0.1 2.4    

December

-0.2 2.4 -1.5 0.9 -0.6 1.4 -0.4 2.6    

The Consumer Price Index for March 2017 is scheduled to be released on Friday, April 14, 2017.


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 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 Atlanta, Ga. metropolitan area covered in this release is comprised of Barrow, Bartow, Carroll, Cherokee, Clayton, Cobb, Coweta, DeKalb, Douglas, Fayette, Forsyth, Fulton, Gwinnett, Henry, Newton, Paulding, Pickens, Rockdale, Spalding, and Walton Counties in Georgia.

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
Atlanta, GA (1982-84=100 unless otherwise noted)
Item and Group

 
Indexes
 
Percent change from-
Dec.
2016
Jan.
2017
Feb.
2017
Feb.
2016
Dec.
2016
Jan.
2017

Expenditure category

 
 

All Items

226.739 - 229.493 3.5 1.2 -

All items (1967=100)

683.776 - 692.079 - - -

Food and beverages

248.549 - 248.679 -0.6 0.1 -

Food

259.160 - 259.219 -0.7 0.0 -

Food at home

242.843 243.542 243.554 -2.5 0.3 0.0

Food away from home

285.554 - 284.641 1.7 -0.3 -

Alcoholic beverages

153.844 - 154.606 0.9 0.5 -

Housing

226.670 - 229.104 4.7 1.1 -

Shelter

248.998 250.597 252.104 5.5 1.2 0.6

Rent of primary residence(1)

254.752 256.121 258.199 6.6 1.4 0.8

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

243.571 245.005 246.556 5.7 1.2 0.6

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

243.571 245.005 246.556 5.7 1.2 0.6

Fuels and utilities

270.820 - 272.609 0.1 0.7 -

Household energy

229.513 232.716 231.329 0.1 0.8 -0.6

Energy Services(1)

228.093 231.280 229.883 0.0 0.8 -0.6

Electricity(1)

197.311 198.249 198.249 -3.5 0.5 0.0

Utility (piped) gas service(1)

266.669 277.211 271.048 11.1 1.6 -2.2

Household furnishings and operations

123.142 - 122.986 3.2 -0.1 -

Apparel

136.525 - 141.676 -2.2 3.8 -

Transportation

189.143 - 191.422 7.5 1.2 -

Private transportation

188.229 - 190.920 8.4 1.4 -

Motor fuel

197.842 202.635 196.879 31.0 -0.5 -2.8

Gasoline (all types)

196.619 201.323 195.515 31.1 -0.6 -2.9

Unleaded regular(3)

192.592 197.218 191.462 31.8 -0.6 -2.9

Unleaded midgrade(3)(4)

245.030 249.728 244.156 28.8 -0.4 -2.2

Unleaded premium(3)

213.033 218.249 212.191 25.3 -0.4 -2.8

Medical Care

441.391 - 456.506 7.4 3.4 -

Recreation(5)

84.906 - 86.807 -0.2 2.2 -

Education and communication(5)

134.383 - 134.929 -0.6 0.4 -

Other goods and services

366.978 - 369.183 1.4 0.6 -
 

Commodity and service group

 
 

All Items

226.739 - 229.493 3.5 1.2 -

Commodities

175.059 - 176.197 2.7 0.7 -

Commodities less food & beverages

142.217 - 143.767 5.2 1.1 -

Nondurables less food & beverages

174.760 - 177.901 9.6 1.8 -

Durables

108.487 - 108.436 -1.2 0.0 -

Services

275.531 - 279.739 4.0 1.5 -
 

Special aggregate indexes

 
 

All items less medical care

215.381 - 217.555 3.2 1.0 -

All items less shelter

221.453 - 224.104 2.5 1.2 -

Commodities less food

142.283 - 143.796 5.0 1.1 -

Nondurables

206.761 - 208.515 3.9 0.8 -

Nondurables less food

171.978 - 174.914 8.9 1.7 -

Services less rent of shelter(2)

320.482 - 326.344 2.3 1.8 -

Services less medical care services

258.639 - 262.124 3.9 1.3 -

Energy

194.194 197.881 194.517 13.1 0.2 -1.7

All items less energy

229.999 - 232.995 2.8 1.3 -

All items less food and energy

225.831 - 229.298 3.5 1.5 -

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.
 

- Data not available.
NOTE: Index applies to a month as a whole, not to any specific date. Data not seasonally adjusted.
 

 

Last Modified Date: Wednesday, March 15, 2017