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19-2021-SAN
Wednesday, November 13, 2019

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Consumer Price Index, Phoenix area – October 2019

Area prices were up 1.4 percent over the past two months, up 3.8 percent from a year ago

Prices in the Phoenix area, as measured by the Consumer Price Index for All Urban Consumers (CPI-U), increased 1.4 percent for the two months ending in October 2019, the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics reported today. (See table A.) Assistant Commissioner for Regional Operations Richard Holden noted that the October increase was influenced by higher prices for medical care. (Data in this report are not seasonally adjusted. Accordingly, bi-monthly changes may reflect seasonal influences.)

Over the last 12 months, the CPI-U rose 3.8 percent. (See chart 1 and table A.) The index for all items less food and energy increased 4.2 percent over the year. Food prices rose 3.4 percent. Energy prices inched up 0.1 percent, largely the result of an increase in the price of gasoline. (See table 1.)

Food

Food prices advanced 1.4 percent for the two months ending in October. (See table 1.) Prices for food at home rose 1.6 percent, and prices for food away from home increased 1.1 percent for the same period.

Over the year, food prices rose 3.4 percent. Prices for food at home advanced 4.2 percent since a year ago, and prices for food away from home increased 2.4 percent.

Energy

The energy index rose 2.5 percent for the two months ending in October. The increase was mainly due to higher prices for gasoline (6.8 percent). Prices for electricity declined 2.8 percent, and prices for natural gas service declined 1.5 percent for the same period.

Energy prices inched up 0.1 percent over the year, largely due to higher prices for gasoline (1.8 percent). Prices paid for natural gas service dropped 10.2 percent, and prices for electricity decreased 0.9 percent during the past year.

All items less food and energy

The index for all items less food and energy advanced 1.4 percent in the latest two-month period. Higher prices for medical care (11.1 percent), other goods and services (2.3 percent), and shelter (0.6 percent) were partially offset by lower prices for used cars and trucks (-3.8 percent) and recreation (-0.6 percent).

Over the year, the index for all items less food and energy increased 4.2 percent. Components contributing to the increase included medical care (16.0 percent) and shelter (5.4 percent). Partly offsetting the increases were price declines in apparel (-2.5 percent) and education and communication (-1.4 percent).

The December 2019 Consumer Price Index for the Phoenix area is scheduled to be released on January 14, 2020.

Consumer Price Index Geographic Revision for 2018

In January 2018, BLS introduced a new geographic area sample for the Consumer Price Index (CPI). This index changed to a bimonthly publication schedule beginning in February, 2018. Additional information on the geographic revision is available at: www.bls.gov/cpi/additional-resources/geographic-revision-2018.htm.


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 Phoenix-Mesa-Scottsdale metropolitan area covered in this release consists of Maricopa and Pinal Counties in the State of Arizona.

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

Phoenix-Mesa-Scottsdale (December 2001=100 unless otherwise noted)
Item and Group

Indexes Percent change from-
Aug.
2019
Sep.
2019
Oct.
2019
Oct.
2018
Aug.
2019
Sep.
2019

Expenditure category

All items

143.760 - 145.833 3.8 1.4 -

Food and beverages

148.522 - 150.047 3.1 1.0 -

Food

149.490 - 151.519 3.4 1.4 -

Food at home

144.524 146.800 146.811 4.2 1.6 0.0

Cereals and bakery products

184.691 - 189.444 4.5 2.6 -

Meats, poultry, fish, and eggs

178.203 - 183.387 4.4 2.9 -

Dairy and related products

110.083 - 113.307 7.2 2.9 -

Fruits and vegetables

132.898 - 128.122 3.1 -3.6 -

Nonalcoholic beverages and beverage materials

104.379 - 105.863 -0.9 1.4 -

Other food at home

141.436 - 145.560 5.6 2.9 -

Food away from home

157.484 - 159.174 2.4 1.1 -

Alcoholic beverages

140.358 - 137.042 0.0 -2.4 -

Housing

150.385 - 150.860 4.9 0.3 -

Shelter

155.755 156.350 156.743 5.4 0.6 0.3

Rent of primary residence

164.237 165.375 165.859 6.8 1.0 0.3

Owners' equiv. rent of residences

153.586 154.718 155.395 5.5 1.2 0.4

Owners' equiv. rent of primary residence

153.586 154.718 155.395 5.5 1.2 0.4

Fuels and utilities

174.597 - 171.364 0.0 -1.9 -

Household energy

181.116 176.633 176.470 -1.8 -2.6 -0.1

Energy services

181.072 176.538 176.258 -1.9 -2.7 -0.2

Electricity

197.659 192.402 192.170 -0.9 -2.8 -0.1

Utility (piped) gas service

98.234 97.247 96.744 -10.2 -1.5 -0.5

Household furnishings and operations

100.948 - 100.864 6.0 -0.1 -

Apparel

136.752 - 137.049 -2.5 0.2 -

Transportation

129.182 - 131.000 -0.1 1.4 -

Private transportation

130.529 - 132.756 0.1 1.7 -

New and used motor vehicles

92.755 - 92.519 -1.7 -0.3 -

New vehicles

93.734 - 93.993 -0.6 0.3 -

Used cars and trucks

87.789 - 84.428 2.0 -3.8 -

Motor fuel

236.285 248.501 252.012 1.6 6.7 1.4

Gasoline (all types)

236.562 249.053 252.611 1.8 6.8 1.4

Gasoline, unleaded regular(1)

237.442 250.314 254.074 1.9 7.0 1.5

Gasoline, unleaded midgrade(1)

247.382 258.267 262.284 1.3 6.0 1.6

Gasoline, unleaded premium(1)

235.539 246.493 248.921 1.5 5.7 1.0

Motor vehicle insurance

168.981 - 168.981 -1.8 0.0 -

Medical care

182.302 - 202.553 16.0 11.1 -

Recreation

117.277 - 116.559 0.7 -0.6 -

Education and communication

116.657 - 116.834 -1.4 0.2 -

Tuition, other school fees, and child care

200.384 - 200.384 2.1 0.0 -

Other goods and services

146.587 - 149.993 3.1 2.3 -

Commodity and service group

All items

143.760 - 145.833 3.8 1.4 -

Commodities

122.930 - 127.112 4.1 3.4 -

Commodities less food & beverages

109.815 - 115.180 4.7 4.9 -

Nondurables less food & beverages

145.748 - 158.614 7.5 8.8 -

Durables

79.588 - 79.004 0.6 -0.7 -

Services

158.083 - 158.788 3.6 0.4 -

Special aggregate indexes

All items less medical care

141.514 - 142.360 2.7 0.6 -

All items less shelter

137.450 - 140.082 2.8 1.9 -

Commodities less food

110.985 - 115.984 4.5 4.5 -

Nondurables

147.440 - 154.529 5.3 4.8 -

Nondurables less food

145.301 - 156.725 6.9 7.9 -

Services less rent of shelter

160.437 - 160.768 1.5 0.2 -

Services less medical care services

154.975 - 155.381 3.3 0.3 -

Energy

206.048 209.627 211.231 0.1 2.5 0.8

All items less energy

140.178 - 142.076 4.1 1.4 -

All items less food and energy

138.669 - 140.545 4.2 1.4 -

Footnotes
(1) Special index based on a substantially smaller sample.

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

 

Last Modified Date: Wednesday, November 13, 2019