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News Release Information

21-2000-SAN
Wednesday, November 10, 2021

Contacts

Technical information:
Media contact:
  • (415) 625-2270

Consumer Price Index, Seattle area — October 2021

Area prices were up 1.1 percent over the past two months, up 6.5 percent from a year ago

Prices in the Seattle area, as measured by the Consumer Price Index for All Urban Consumers (CPI-U), increased 1.1 percent for the two months ending in October 2021, the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics reported today. (See table A.) Regional Commissioner Chris Rosenlund noted that the October increase was influenced by higher prices for shelter and new and used 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 increased 6.5 percent. (See chart 1 and table A.) Food prices rose 7.9 percent. Energy prices rose 25.8 percent, largely the result of an increase in the price of gasoline. The index for all items less food and energy increased 5.3 percent over the year. (See table 1.)

Chart 1. Over-the-year percent change in CPI-U, Seattle, October 2018-October 2021

Food

Food prices increased 1.3 percent for the two months ending in October. (See table 1.) Prices for food at home increased 2.1 percent, led by higher prices for meats, poultry, fish, and eggs (4.8 percent). Prices for food away from home increased 0.5 percent for the same period.

Over the year, food prices rose 7.9 percent. Prices for food at home increased 9.1 percent, led by a 22.5 percent jump in prices for meats, poultry, fish, and eggs. Since a year ago, prices for food away from home increased 6.6 percent.

Energy

The energy index inched down 0.2 percent for the two months ending in October. The decrease was mainly due to lower prices for electricity (-0.5 percent). Prices for gasoline edged down 0.2 percent, but prices for natural gas service rose 0.5 percent for the same period.

Energy prices rose 25.8 percent over the year, largely due to higher prices for gasoline (42.9 percent). Prices for natural gas service rose 9.2 percent, and prices for electricity rose 2.9 percent during the past year.

All items less food and energy

The index for all items less food and energy increased 1.2 percent in the latest two-month period. Higher prices for new and used motor vehicles (3.9 percent), recreation (2.8 percent), and shelter (0.8 percent) were partially offset by lower prices for apparel (-4.2 percent) and education and communication (-0.6 percent).

Over the year, the index for all items less food and energy increased 5.3 percent. Components contributing to the increase included new and used motor vehicles (20.9 percent), recreation (15.2 percent), and shelter (2.6 percent). Partly offsetting the increase was a price decrease in motor vehicle insurance (-8.7 percent).

Table A. Seattle-Tacoma-Bellevue, WA, CPI-U 2-month and 12-month percent changes, all items index, not seasonally adjusted
Month 2017 2018 2019 2020 2021
2-month 12-month 2-month 12-month 2-month 12-month 2-month 12-month 2-month 12-month

February

1.0 3.4 0.8 3.3 0.7 2.7 1.0 2.5 1.2 1.7

April

0.8 3.1 0.8 3.3 0.5 2.4 -0.6 1.3 1.1 3.4

June

0.8 3.0 0.8 3.3 0.7 2.3 0.2 0.9 2.2 5.5

August

-0.2 2.5 -0.3 3.1 0.6 3.2 1.4 1.6 1.1 5.2

October

0.5 3.0 0.4 3.1 -0.6 2.2 -0.1 2.1 1.1 6.5

December

0.5 3.5 0.2 2.8 0.3 2.2 -0.4 1.4

The December 2021 Consumer Price Index for the Seattle area is scheduled to be released on January 12, 2022.

Coronavirus (COVID-19) Pandemic Impact on October 2021 Consumer Price Index Data

Data collection by personal visit for the Consumer Price Index (CPI) program has been suspended almost entirely since March 16, 2020. When possible, data normally collected by personal visit were collected either online or by phone. Additionally, data collection in October was affected by the temporary closing or limited operations of certain types of establishments. These factors resulted in an increase in the number of prices considered temporarily unavailable and imputed.

While the CPI program attempted to collect as much data as possible, many indexes are based on smaller amounts of collected prices than usual, and a small number of indexes that are normally published were not published this month. Additional information is available at https://www.bls.gov/covid19/effects-of-covid-19-pandemic-on-consumer-price-index.htm.


Technical Note

The Consumer Price Index (CPI) is a measures 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 U.S. population and (2) a CPI for Urban Wage Earners and Clerical Workers (CPI-W) which covers approximately 29 percent of the total U.S. 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 6,000 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; for most of the CPI-U the reference base is 1982-84 equals 100. An increase of 7 percent from the reference base, for example, is shown as 107.000.  Alternatively, that relationship can also be expressed as the price of a base period market basket of goods and services rising from $100 to $107. For further details see the CPI home page on the internet at www.bls.gov/cpi and the CPI section of the BLS Handbook of Methods available on the internet at www.bls.gov/opub/hom/cpi/.

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 individuals with sensory impairments 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-
Historical
data
Aug.
2021
Sep.
2021
Oct.
2021
Oct.
2020
Aug.
2021
Sep.
2021

Expenditure category

All items

299.704 - 303.099 6.5 1.1 -

All items (1967=100)

913.615 - 923.964 - - -

Food and beverages

309.258 - 313.134 8.1 1.3 -

Food

311.155 - 315.339 7.9 1.3 -

Food at home

280.350 279.897 286.313 9.1 2.1 2.3

Cereals and bakery products

322.891 - 319.078 5.1 -1.2 -

Meats, poultry, fish, and eggs

260.960 - 273.492 22.5 4.8 -

Dairy and related products

238.956 - 244.544 8.2 2.3 -

Fruits and vegetables

432.764 - 444.553 8.6 2.7 -

Nonalcoholic beverages and beverage materials(1)

362.105 - 362.350 3.2 0.1 -

Other food at home

218.104 - 222.116 3.7 1.8 -

Food away from home

358.221 - 359.862 6.6 0.5 -

Alcoholic beverages

283.533 - 284.625 9.9 0.4 -

Housing

350.818 - 353.673 3.4 0.8 -

Shelter

401.243 400.694 404.396 2.6 0.8 0.9

Rent of primary residence(2)

407.217 407.680 411.695 1.7 1.1 1.0

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

419.206 420.443 423.403 1.5 1.0 0.7

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

419.206 420.443 423.403 1.5 1.0 0.7

Fuels and utilities

289.756 - 289.446 3.6 -0.1 -

Household energy

259.888 260.451 259.411 4.6 -0.2 -0.4

Energy services(2)

306.785 306.879 305.872 4.3 -0.3 -0.3

Electricity(2)

333.950 334.021 332.168 2.9 -0.5 -0.6

Utility (piped) gas service(2)

176.841 176.948 177.637 9.2 0.5 0.4

Household furnishings and operations

198.269 - 201.337 8.7 1.5 -

Apparel

135.178 - 129.504 2.1 -4.2 -

Transportation

247.132 - 253.876 17.2 2.7 -

Private transportation

265.412 - 270.069 19.4 1.8 -

New and used motor vehicles(4)

117.583 - 122.162 20.9 3.9 -

New vehicles(1)

201.973 - 211.753 12.8 4.8 -

Used cars and trucks(1)

456.269 - 450.934 28.0 -1.2 -

Motor fuel

438.066 437.437 437.313 42.9 -0.2 0.0

Gasoline (all types)

447.847 447.030 446.855 42.9 -0.2 0.0

Gasoline, unleaded regular(4)

485.072 484.022 483.910 43.7 -0.2 0.0

Gasoline, unleaded midgrade(4)(5)

355.726 355.526 355.365 36.6 -0.1 0.0

Gasoline, unleaded premium(4)

415.493 415.227 414.807 40.4 -0.2 -0.1

Motor vehicle insurance(1)

473.696 - 465.102 -8.7 -1.8 -

Medical care

417.400 - 425.299 2.5 1.9 -

Recreation(6)

111.782 - 114.965 15.2 2.8 -

Education and communication(6)

147.761 - 146.890 1.3 -0.6 -

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

1,760.932 - 1,744.130 0.8 -1.0 -

Other goods and services

- - 440.462 5.9 - -

Commodity and service group

All items

299.704 - 303.099 6.5 1.1 -

Commodities

221.604 - 223.826 12.9 1.0 -

Commodities less food & beverages

179.102 - 180.549 16.9 0.8 -

Nondurables less food & beverages

207.507 - 207.279 12.3 -0.1 -

Durables

147.980 - 150.645 22.2 1.8 -

Services

371.359 - 375.863 3.0 1.2 -

Special aggregate indexes

All items less medical care

294.517 - 297.698 6.8 1.1 -

All items less shelter

260.384 - 263.816 8.7 1.3 -

Commodities less food

183.220 - 184.648 16.4 0.8 -

Nondurables

256.286 - 258.097 9.7 0.7 -

Nondurables less food

213.854 - 213.750 12.0 0.0 -

Services less rent of shelter(3)

344.083 - 350.102 3.4 1.7 -

Services less medical care services

363.777 - 367.933 3.0 1.1 -

Energy

357.300 357.264 356.670 25.8 -0.2 -0.2

All items less energy

299.961 - 303.573 5.7 1.2 -

All items less food and energy

298.196 - 301.708 5.3 1.2 -

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: Wednesday, November 10, 2021