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17-1278-SAN
Thursday, September 14, 2017

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Consumer Price Index, West Region — August 2017

Area prices were up 0.2 percent over the past month, up 2.7 percent from a year ago

Prices in the West Region, as measured by the Consumer Price Index for All Urban Consumers (CPI-U), crept up 0.2 percent in August, the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics reported today. (See table A.) The August increase was influenced by higher prices for shelter and gasoline. (Data in this report are not seasonally adjusted. Accordingly, month-to-month changes may reflect seasonal influences.)

Over the last 12 months, the CPI-U advanced 2.7 percent. (See chart 1 and table A.) Energy prices rose 5.5 percent, largely the result of an increase in the price of gasoline. The index for all items less food and energy advanced 2.7 percent over the year. (See table 1.)

Food

Food prices were unchanged for the month of August. (See table 1.) Prices for food at home inched down 0.2 percent, but prices for food away from home advanced 0.3 percent for the same period.

Over the year, food prices increased 1.6 percent. Prices for food away from home rose 3.1 percent since a year ago, and prices for food at home advanced 0.4 percent.

Energy

The energy index rose 1.1 percent over the month. The increase was mainly due to higher prices for gasoline (2.2 percent). Prices for natural gas service were virtually unchanged, while prices for electricity inched down 0.2 percent for the same period.

Energy prices rose 5.5 percent over the year, largely due to higher prices for gasoline (10.7 percent). Prices paid for electricity increased 1.2 percent, but prices for natural gas service declined 2.6 percent during the past year.

All items less food and energy

The index for all items less food and energy crept up 0.2 percent in August. Higher prices for shelter (0.5 percent), apparel (0.5 percent), and medical care (0.2 percent) were partially offset by lower prices for other goods and services (-0.4 percent), new vehicles (-0.3 percent), and recreation (-0.2 percent).

Over the year, the index for all items less food and energy advanced 2.7 percent. Components contributing to the increase included shelter (5.0 percent), other goods and services (4.2 percent), and medical care (1.6 percent). Partly offsetting the increases were price declines in apparel (-1.7 percent) and education and communication (-1.5 percent).

Table A. West Region CPI-U monthly and annual percent changes (not seasonally adjusted)
Month 2012 2013 2014 2015 2016 2017
Monthly Annual Monthly Annual Monthly Annual Monthly Annual Monthly Annual Monthly Annual

January

0.4 2.6 0.3 1.7 0.3 1.7 -0.3 0.7 0.5 2.6 0.5 2.5

February

0.4 2.5 0.8 2.0 0.4 1.3 0.6 0.9 0.1 2.1 0.6 3.0

March

0.9 2.4 0.4 1.5 0.6 1.5 0.8 1.1 0.2 1.5 0.3 3.1

April

0.2 2.1 0.0 1.3 0.3 1.8 0.3 1.0 0.5  1.8 0.3 2.9

May

0.2 2.0 0.2 1.3 0.6 2.3 0.8 1.2 0.5 1.5 0.2 2.6

June

-0.2 2.0 0.1 1.5 0.1 2.3 0.0 1.1 0.2 1.6 0.0 2.5

July

-0.3 1.8 0.0 1.9 0.1 2.3 0.3 1.3 0.1 1.4 0.1 2.5

August

0.5 2.1 0.1 1.5 -0.1 2.1 -0.1 1.3 0.0 1.5 0.2 2.7

September

0.5 2.2 0.2 1.3 0.1 2.0 -0.2 1.0 0.3 2.0    

October

0.4 2.5 -0.1 0.9 -0.1 2.0 0.0 1.1 0.3 2.3    

November

-0.7 1.9 -0.4 1.3 -0.6 1.7 -0.2 1.5 -0.2 2.3    

December

-0.5 1.7 0.0 1.8 -0.5 1.3 -0.1 1.8 0.0 2.5    

The September 2017 Consumer Price Index for the West Region is scheduled to be released on October 13, 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/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 West Region covered in this release is comprised of the following thirteen states: Alaska, Arizona, California, Colorado, Hawaii, Idaho, Montana, Nevada, New Mexico, Oregon, Utah, Washington, and Wyoming.

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

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

 
Indexes
 
Percent change from-
Jun.
2017
Jul.
2017
Aug.
2017
Aug.
2016
Jun.
2017
Jul.
2017

Expenditure category

 
 

All Items

254.469 254.708 255.282 2.7 0.3 0.2

All items (December 1977=100)

411.335 411.722 412.649      

Food and beverages

254.351 255.163 255.140 1.6 0.3 0.0

Food

254.220 255.101 255.086 1.6 0.3 0.0

Food at home

244.962 246.141 245.591 0.4 0.3 -0.2

Food away from home

266.125 266.577 267.324 3.1 0.5 0.3

Alcoholic beverages

252.768 252.643 252.515 2.0 -0.1 -0.1

Housing

275.972 277.110 278.205 4.2 0.8 0.4

Shelter

315.895 317.460 318.929 5.0 1.0 0.5

Rent of primary residence(1)

332.809 334.220 335.741 5.3 0.9 0.5

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

331.530 333.119 334.579 5.0 0.9 0.4

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

331.535 333.123 334.590 5.0 0.9 0.4

Fuels and utilities

296.793 296.753 296.842 1.6 0.0 0.0

Household energy

256.940 256.581 256.389 0.4 -0.2 -0.1

Energy services(1)

259.358 259.008 258.781 0.3 -0.2 -0.1

Electricity(1)

286.873 287.553 287.100 1.2 0.1 -0.2

Utility (piped) gas service(1)

210.130 207.298 207.598 -2.6 -1.2 0.1

Household furnishings and operations

127.865 128.039 128.280 0.5 0.3 0.2

Apparel

117.509 116.565 117.120 -1.7 -0.3 0.5

Transportation

206.034 203.452 203.809 3.3 -1.1 0.2

Private transportation

199.747 197.903 198.976 3.8 -0.4 0.5

New and used motor vehicles(3)

100.686 100.182 100.064 -0.8 -0.6 -0.1

New vehicles

147.884 146.187 145.768 -0.6 -1.4 -0.3

New cars and trucks(3)(4)

102.721 101.537 101.245 -0.6 -1.4 -0.3

New cars(4)

145.596 143.573 142.346 -1.4 -2.2 -0.9

Used cars and trucks

134.856 134.446 134.351 -3.1 -0.4 -0.1

Motor fuel

224.767 217.894 222.750 10.6 -0.9 2.2

Gasoline (all types)

223.980 217.074 221.923 10.7 -0.9 2.2

Gasoline, unleaded regular(4)

221.188 214.277 219.170 10.7 -0.9 2.3

Gasoline, unleaded midgrade(4)(5)

214.940 207.764 212.069 10.8 -1.3 2.1

Gasoline, unleaded premium(4)

220.984 214.785 218.984 10.3 -0.9 2.0

Medical Care

476.913 479.489 480.581 1.6 0.8 0.2

Medical care commodities

370.456 373.433 374.209 4.7 1.0 0.2

Medical care services

510.299 512.688 513.883 0.8 0.7 0.2

Professional services

347.039 347.865 352.155 0.3 1.5 1.2

Recreation(3)

112.582 112.620 112.431 0.2 -0.1 -0.2

Education and communication(3)

135.408 135.565 135.778 -1.5 0.3 0.2

Other goods and services

425.120 427.393 425.773 4.2 0.2 -0.4
 

Commodity and Service Group

 
 

All Items

254.469 254.708 255.282 2.7 0.3 0.2

Commodities

180.412 179.962 180.155 1.5 -0.1 0.1

Commodities less food & beverages

143.647 142.725 142.993 1.4 -0.5 0.2

Nondurables less food & beverages

183.584 182.159 183.208 3.4 -0.2 0.6

Nondurables less food, beverages, and apparel

230.041 228.276 229.664 5.2 -0.2 0.6

Durables

107.183 106.695 106.324 -1.2 -0.8 -0.3

Services

323.025 323.926 324.861 3.4 0.6 0.3

Rent of shelter(2)

336.296 337.961 339.535 5.0 1.0 0.5

Transportation services

304.937 302.777 300.766 4.0 -1.4 -0.7

Other services

342.113 342.305 343.520 0.2 0.4 0.4
 

Special aggregate indexes:

 
 

All items less medical care

244.297 244.432 244.982 2.8 0.3 0.2

All items less food

254.679 254.819 255.484 2.9 0.3 0.3

All items less shelter

230.569 230.243 230.440 1.4 -0.1 0.1

Commodities less food

147.709 146.801 147.061 1.5 -0.4 0.2

Nondurables

218.986 218.589 219.150 2.4 0.1 0.3

Nondurables less food

188.683 187.323 188.311 3.3 -0.2 0.5

Nondurables less food and apparel

231.916 230.300 231.550 4.8 -0.2 0.5

Services less rent of shelter(2)

342.377 342.371 342.567 1.4 0.1 0.1

Services less medical care services

309.934 310.737 311.652 3.7 0.6 0.3

Energy

241.710 237.666 240.324 5.5 -0.6 1.1

All items less energy

257.508 258.070 258.492 2.5 0.4 0.2

All items less food and energy

258.853 259.362 259.860 2.7 0.4 0.2

Commodities less food and energy commodities

139.573 139.360 139.079 -0.1 -0.4 -0.2

Energy commodities

229.064 222.186 227.055 10.6 -0.9 2.2

Services less energy services

327.907 328.889 329.899 3.6 0.6 0.3

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

Regions defined as the four Census regions. West includes Alaska, Arizona, California, Colorado, Hawaii, Idaho, Montana, Nevada, New Mexico, Oregon, Utah, Washington, and Wyoming.
NOTE: Index applies to a month as a whole, not to any specific date. Data not seasonally adjusted.
 

 

Last Modified Date: Thursday, September 14, 2017