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18-1163-SAN
Thursday, July 12, 2018

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Consumer Price Index, Seattle area — June 2018

Area prices were up 0.8 percent over the past two months, up 3.3 percent from a year ago

Prices in the Seattle Area, as measured by the Consumer Price Index for All Urban Consumers (CPI-U), increased 0.8 percent for the two months ending in June 2018, the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics reported today. (See table A.) Assistant Commissioner for Regional Operations Richard Holden noted that the June increase was influenced by higher prices for shelter and new motor vehicles. (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 3.3 percent. (See chart 1 and table A.) Energy prices jumped 13.4 percent, largely the result of an increase in the price of gasoline. The index for all items less food and energy advanced 2.9 percent over the year. (See table 1.)

Food

Food prices decreased 0.4 percent for the two months ending in June. (See table 1.) Prices for food at home declined 0.9 percent, but prices for food away from home advanced 0.3 percent for the same period.

Over the year, food prices increased 1.8 percent. Prices for food away from home rose 3.3 percent since a year ago, and prices for food at home moved up 0.6 percent.

Energy

The energy index rose 2.7 percent for the two months ending in June. The increase was mainly due to higher prices for gasoline (5.7 percent). Prices for natural gas service rose 0.7 percent, but prices for electricity decreased 2.9 percent for the same period.

Energy prices jumped 13.4 percent over the year, largely due to higher prices for gasoline (24.1 percent). Prices paid for natural gas service moved down 5.6 percent, and prices for electricity declined 1.4 percent during the past year.

All items less food and energy

The index for all items less food and energy increased 0.8 percent in the latest two-month period. Higher prices for new vehicles (7.9 percent), shelter (1.9 percent) and household furnishings and operations (1.2 percent) were partially offset by lower prices for apparel (-9.1 percent) and medical care (-0.3 percent).

Over the year, the index for all items less food and energy advanced 2.9 percent. Components contributing to the increase included shelter (6.4 percent) and medical care (1.1 percent). Partly offsetting the increases were price declines in apparel (-12.1 percent) and household furnishings and operations (-3.0 percent).

Table A. Seattle-Tacoma-Bremerton CPI-U bi-monthly and annual percent changes (not seasonally adjusted)
Month 2013 2014 2015 2016 2017 2018
Bi-monthly Annual Bi-monthly Annual Bi-monthly Annual Bi-monthly Annual Bi-monthly Annual Bi-monthly Annual

February

0.8 1.8 0.7 1.2 0.2 1.1 0.2 2.2 1.0 3.4  0.8 3.3 

April

0.4 1.2 1.6 2.4 0.9 0.4 1.1 2.5 0.8 3.1  0.8 3.3

June

0.8 1.4 0.4 2.0 1.6 1.6 0.9 1.8 0.8 3.0  0.8 3.3

August

0.0 1.1 -0.2 1.8 0.0 1.8 0.3 2.1 -0.2 2.5    

October

0.0 0.6 0.3 2.1 -0.3 1.2 0.0 2.4 0.5 3.0    

December

-0.7 1.3 -1.1 1.7 -0.2 2.2 0.0 2.6 0.5 3.5    

The August 2018 Consumer Price Index for the Seattle-Tacoma-Bellevue area is scheduled to be released on September 13, 2018.

Consumer Price Index Geographic Revision for 2018

In January 2018, BLS introduced a new geographic area sample for the Consumer Price Index (CPI). As part of the new sample, the index for this area was renamed. Additional information on the geographic revision is available at: www.bls.gov/cpi/georevision2018.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 94 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 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/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 Seattle-Tacoma-Bellevue, WA. metropolitan area covered in this release is comprised of King, Pierce, and Snohomish Counties in the State of Washington.

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

Seattle-Tacoma-Bellevue, WA (1982-84=100 unless otherwise noted)
Item and Group

Indexes Percent change from-
Apr.
2018
May
2018
Jun.
2018
Jun.
2017
Apr.
2018
May
2018

Expenditure category

All items

270.309 - 272.395 3.3 0.8 -

All items (1967=100)

824.007 - 830.365 - - -

Food and beverages

270.720 - 269.717 1.9 -0.4 -

Food

273.556 - 272.471 1.8 -0.4 -

Food at home

252.535 248.263 250.211 0.6 -0.9 0.8

Cereals and bakery products

290.492 - 275.653 - -5.1 -

Meats, poultry, fish, and eggs

207.377 - 205.693 - -0.8 -

Dairy and related products

214.826 - 219.035 - 2.0 -

Fruits and vegetables

410.729 - 400.400 - -2.5 -

Nonalcoholic beverages and beverage materials(1)

299.446 - 301.772 - 0.8 -

Other food at home

215.406 - 216.068 - 0.3 -

Food away from home

305.828 - 306.610 3.3 0.3 -

Food away from home

305.828 - 306.610 3.3 0.3 -

Alcoholic beverages

236.471 - 236.458 2.8 0.0 -

Housing

313.318 - 318.288 5.0 1.6 -

Shelter

360.257 364.516 366.998 6.4 1.9 0.7

Rent of primary residence(2)

370.807 372.487 374.720 7.1 1.1 0.6

Owners' equiv. rent of residences(2)(3)

376.431 377.963 381.577 6.5 1.4 1.0

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

376.431 377.963 381.577 6.5 1.4 1.0

Fuels and utilities

274.063 - 270.949 0.8 -1.1 -

Household energy

250.022 244.375 244.508 -0.8 -2.2 0.1

Energy services(2)

295.507 288.815 288.815 -2.2 -2.3 0.0

Electricity(2)

325.697 316.114 316.114 -1.4 -2.9 0.0

Utility (piped) gas service(2)

160.746 161.843 161.843 -5.6 0.7 0.0

Household furnishings and operations

167.734 - 169.830 -3.0 1.2 -

Apparel

135.942 - 123.633 -12.1 -9.1 -

Transportation

227.376 - 235.853 7.6 3.7 -

Private transportation

235.976 - 244.257 8.7 3.5 -

New and used motor vehicles(4)

99.587 - 103.863 - 4.3 -

New vehicles(1)

195.983 - 211.376 - 7.9 -

Used cars and trucks(1)

320.205 - 316.837 - -1.1 -

Motor fuel

361.570 378.293 382.078 24.2 5.7 1.0

Gasoline (all types)

369.041 386.090 389.911 24.1 5.7 1.0

Gasoline, unleaded regular(4)

401.042 419.803 423.945 24.6 5.7 1.0

Gasoline, unleaded midgrade(4)(5)

288.977 302.491 304.010 22.5 5.2 0.5

Gasoline, unleaded premium(4)

337.184 351.609 355.486 22.0 5.4 1.1

Motor vehicle insurance(1)

582.369 - 582.369 - 0.0 -

Medical care

400.080 - 398.798 1.1 -0.3 -

Recreation(6)

96.814 - 96.805 1.1 0.0 -

Education and communication(6)

133.233 - 132.956 0.3 -0.2 -

Tuition, other school fees, and child care(1)

1,443.550 - 1,443.550 - 0.0 -

Other goods and services

405.340 - 407.482 -0.7 0.5 -

Commodity and service group

All items

270.309 - 272.395 3.3 0.8 -

Commodities

193.824 - 194.047 1.1 0.1 -

Commodities less food & beverages

156.037 - 156.735 0.5 0.4 -

Nondurables less food & beverages

196.703 - 194.352 3.2 -1.2 -

Durables

116.573 - 119.816 -2.9 2.8 -

Services

341.544 - 345.438 4.4 1.1 -

Special aggregate indexes

All items less medical care

264.479 - 266.734 3.4 0.9 -

All items less shelter

236.017 - 236.275 1.5 0.1 -

Commodities less food

159.449 - 160.130 0.7 0.4 -

Nondurables

232.407 - 230.658 2.6 -0.8 -

Nondurables less food

200.373 - 198.149 3.3 -1.1 -

Services less rent of shelter(3)

327.313 - 327.640 1.8 0.1 -

Services less medical care services

333.967 - 338.265 4.7 1.3 -

Energy

312.849 319.187 321.289 13.4 2.7 0.7

All items less energy

270.895 - 272.677 2.7 0.7 -

All items less food and energy

270.701 - 272.962 2.9 0.8 -

Footnotes
(1) Indexes on a November 1977=100 base.
(2) This index series was calculated using a Laspeyres estimator. All other item stratum index series were calculated using a geometric means estimator.
(3) Indexes on a December 1982=100 base.
(4) Special index based on a substantially smaller sample.
(5) Indexes on a December 1993=100 base.
(6) Indexes on a December 1997=100 base.

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

 

Last Modified Date: Thursday, July 12, 2018