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Friday, May 10, 2019

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Consumer Price Index, West Region — April 2019

Area prices were up 0.8 percent over the past month, up 2.9 percent from a year ago

Prices in the West Region, as measured by the Consumer Price Index for All Urban Consumers (CPI-U), advanced 0.8 percent in April, the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics reported today. (See table A.) The April increase was influenced by higher prices for gasoline and shelter. (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 rose 2.9 percent. (See chart 1 and table A.) Energy prices increased 3.4 percent, largely the result of an increase in the price of gasoline. The index for all items less food and energy increased 2.9 percent over the year. (See table 1.)

Food

Food prices advanced 0.3 percent for the month of April. (See table 1.) Prices for food away from home rose 0.5 percent, while prices for food at home were virtually unchanged for the same period.

Over the year, food prices advanced 2.4 percent. Prices for food away from home increased 3.4 percent since a year ago, and prices for food at home advanced 1.6 percent.

Energy

The energy index advanced 8.5 percent over the month. The increase was mainly due to higher prices for gasoline (14.6 percent). Prices for electricity edged up 0.1 percent, but prices for natural gas service declined 1.1 percent for the same period.

Energy prices increased 3.4 percent over the year, largely due to higher prices for gasoline (5.8 percent). Prices paid for natural gas service were virtually unchanged, while prices for electricity decreased 0.5 percent during the past year.

All items less food and energy

The index for all items less food and energy increased 0.3 percent in April. Higher prices for medical care (0.8 percent) and shelter (0.6 percent) were partially offset by lower prices for household furnishings and operations (-1.5 percent) and new and used motor vehicles (-0.5 percent).

Over the year, the index for all items less food and energy increased 2.9 percent. Components contributing to the increase included shelter (4.6 percent) and medical care (3.3 percent). Partly offsetting the increases was a price decline in apparel (-2.4 percent).

Table A. West region CPI-U 1-month and 12-month percent changes, all items index, not seasonally adjusted
Month 2015 2016 2017 2018 2019
1-month 12-month 1-month 12-month 1-month 12-month 1-month 12-month 1-month 12-month

January

-0.3 0.7 0.5 2.6 0.5 2.5 0.5 3.1 0.2 2.7

February

0.6 0.9 0.1 2.1 0.6 3.0 0.5 3.1 0.2 2.4

March

0.8 1.1 0.2 1.5 0.3 3.1 0.4 3.2 0.4 2.4

April

0.3 1.0 0.5 1.8 0.3 2.9 0.4 3.2 0.8 2.9

May

0.8 1.2 0.5 1.5 0.2 2.6 0.5 3.5

June

0.0 1.1 0.2 1.6 0.0 2.5 0.2 3.6

July

0.3 1.3 0.1 1.4 0.1 2.5 0.1 3.6

August

-0.1 1.3 0.0 1.5 0.2 2.7 0.2 3.6

September

-0.2 1.0 0.3 2.0 0.5 2.9 0.3 3.4

October

0.0 1.1 0.3 2.3 0.3 2.9 0.4 3.5

November

-0.2 1.5 -0.2 2.3 0.0 3.1 -0.2 3.3

December

-0.1 1.8 0.0 2.5 0.1 3.1 -0.2 3.1

The May 2019 Consumer Price Index for the West Region is scheduled to be released on June 12, 2019.


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 93 percent of the total population and (2) a CPI for Urban Wage Earners and Clerical Workers (CPI-W) which covers 29 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 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-
Feb.
2019
Mar.
2019
Apr.
2019
Apr.
2018
Feb.
2019
Mar.
2019

Expenditure category

All Items

266.215 267.370 269.522 2.9 1.2 0.8

All items (December 1977=100)

430.322 432.189 435.668      

Food and beverages

264.248 264.728 265.309 2.4 0.4 0.2

Food

263.967 264.503 265.213 2.4 0.5 0.3

Food at home

250.208 250.581 250.761 1.6 0.2 0.1

Cereals and bakery products

263.999 266.782 268.815 4.6 1.8 0.8

Meats, poultry, fish, and eggs

257.040 257.109 258.895 0.1 0.7 0.7

Dairy and related products

228.867 230.775 227.794 0.2 -0.5 -1.3

Fruits and vegetables

334.891 334.352 336.582 3.3 0.5 0.7

Nonalcoholic beverages and beverage materials

175.763 174.032 174.734 3.3 -0.6 0.4

Other food at home

213.704 214.244 212.510 0.0 -0.6 -0.8

Food away from home

281.872 282.618 284.010 3.4 0.8 0.5

Alcoholic beverages

264.525 264.272 263.201 1.5 -0.5 -0.4

Housing

293.930 295.049 295.968 3.9 0.7 0.3

Shelter

339.427 340.834 342.714 4.6 1.0 0.6

Rent of primary residence(1)

359.909 361.809 363.035 5.0 0.9 0.3

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

356.837 358.207 359.596 4.5 0.8 0.4

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

356.844 358.215 359.608 4.5 0.8 0.4

Fuels and utilities

299.218 300.659 300.944 1.5 0.6 0.1

Household energy

250.987 252.622 252.052 -0.4 0.4 -0.2

Energy services(1)

252.537 254.042 253.686 -0.4 0.5 -0.1

Electricity(1)

282.977 284.879 285.156 -0.5 0.8 0.1

Utility (piped) gas service(1)

195.624 196.211 194.118 -0.1 -0.8 -1.1

Household furnishings and operations

133.324 133.339 131.321 0.4 -1.5 -1.5

Apparel

116.537 117.775 118.039 -2.4 1.3 0.2

Transportation

212.308 214.635 222.493 2.6 4.8 3.7

Private transportation

207.509 210.032 217.909 2.9 5.0 3.8

New and used motor vehicles(3)

100.349 100.725 100.217 0.0 -0.1 -0.5

New vehicles

148.132 148.368 147.416 1.0 -0.5 -0.6

New cars and trucks(3)(4)

102.877 103.032 102.368 0.9 -0.5 -0.6

New cars(4)

145.594 145.667 144.981 1.8 -0.4 -0.5

Used cars and trucks

134.124 135.391 135.162 0.7 0.8 -0.2

Motor fuel

234.893 243.824 278.896 5.8 18.7 14.4

Gasoline (all types)

233.532 242.567 278.093 5.8 19.1 14.6

Gasoline, unleaded regular(4)

230.505 239.611 275.236 5.8 19.4 14.9

Gasoline, unleaded midgrade(4)(5)

224.213 231.986 264.429 6.0 17.9 14.0

Gasoline, unleaded premium(4)

230.957 239.031 271.420 5.9 17.5 13.6

Motor vehicle insurance(6)

854.341 852.069 851.247 3.2 -0.4 -0.1

Medical Care

502.117 503.464 507.429 3.3 1.1 0.8

Medical care commodities

382.849 383.737 386.605 2.0 1.0 0.7

Medical care services

539.756 541.250 545.566 3.6 1.1 0.8

Professional services

356.672 356.551 359.178 0.2 0.7 0.7

Recreation(3)

114.556 114.948 115.022 1.3 0.4 0.1

Education and communication(3)

137.144 136.896 136.774 0.9 -0.3 -0.1

Tuition, other school fees, and child care(6)

1,460.060 1,459.781 1,460.406 5.7 0.0 0.0

Other goods and services

443.306 444.421 445.412 2.4 0.5 0.2

Commodity and Service Group

All Items

266.215 267.370 269.522 2.9 1.2 0.8

Commodities

184.186 185.324 187.966 1.4 2.1 1.4

Commodities less food & beverages

144.913 146.239 149.518 0.7 3.2 2.2

Nondurables less food & beverages

187.345 190.253 198.966 1.6 6.2 4.6

Nondurables less food, beverages, and apparel

236.860 240.949 255.702 3.0 8.0 6.1

Durables

106.438 106.504 105.515 -0.4 -0.9 -0.9

Services

342.496 343.635 345.218 3.7 0.8 0.5

Rent of shelter(2)

361.431 362.957 364.974 4.7 1.0 0.6

Transportation services

320.168 320.549 322.512 1.8 0.7 0.6

Other services

355.631 356.293 356.482 2.7 0.2 0.1

Special aggregate indexes:

All items less medical care

255.433 256.577 258.646 2.8 1.3 0.8

All items less food

266.743 267.996 270.374 2.9 1.4 0.9

All items less shelter

237.518 238.575 240.842 1.9 1.4 1.0

Commodities less food

149.264 150.558 153.749 0.8 3.0 2.1

Nondurables

225.652 227.473 232.532 2.0 3.0 2.2

Nondurables less food

192.926 195.668 203.867 1.6 5.7 4.2

Nondurables less food and apparel

239.195 242.869 256.106 2.8 7.1 5.5

Services less rent of shelter(2)

356.735 357.512 358.724 2.5 0.6 0.3

Services less medical care services

328.703 329.816 331.216 3.7 0.8 0.4

Energy

244.834 251.002 272.448 3.4 11.3 8.5

All items less energy

269.986 270.786 271.552 2.8 0.6 0.3

All items less food and energy

271.834 272.681 273.459 2.9 0.6 0.3

Commodities less food and energy commodities

140.075 140.463 139.924 -0.3 -0.1 -0.4

Energy commodities

239.672 248.744 283.769 5.7 18.4 14.1

Services less energy services

349.012 350.136 351.832 3.9 0.8 0.5

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) Indexes 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.
(6) Indexes on a December 1977=100 base.

- Data not available
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: Friday, May 10, 2019