May 26, 2004
Durable commodities prices paid by consumers decreased 4.3 percent in 2003, the largest calendar-year decrease since 1938. This followed a decline of 3.3 percent in 2002.
Durables include items such as vehicles, furniture and bedding, and computers. New vehicle prices decreased 1.8 percent last year.
Furniture and bedding prices were down 1.6 percent in 2003. Prices for personal computers and peripheral equipment dropped by 17.8 percent.
The nondurables index rose 2.4 percent last year, following a 3.1-percent increase in 2002. The aggregate commodities index was up 0.5 percent in 2003, after rising 1.2 percent in the previous year.
These data are from the BLS Consumer Price Index program. Annual percent changes are December-to-December changes. For additional information on consumer price changes in 2003, see "Consumer prices during 2003," by Todd Wilson, Monthly Labor Review, April 2004.
Bureau of Labor Statistics, U.S. Department of Labor, The Economics Daily, Another big drop in consumer durables prices on the Internet at http://www.bls.gov/opub/ted/2004/may/wk4/art03.htm (visited November 27, 2015).
Fifty years of looking at changes in peoples lives
Longitudinal surveys help us understand long-term changes, such as how events that happened when a person was in high school affect labor market success as an adult.