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12-1715-PHI

Wednesday, August 15, 2012

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Consumer Price Index, South Region – July 2012

Prices in the South down 0.2 percent over the month; up 1.4 percent over the year

The Consumer Price Index for All Urban Consumers (CPI-U) for the South edged down 0.2 percent in July, the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics reported today. Sheila Watkins, the Bureau’s regional commissioner, noted that energy prices declined 1.1 percent over the month. The indexes for food and all items less food and energy were unchanged since June. Within the all items less food and energy group, several components, led by apparel, reported decreases, while shelter was among those that recorded increases. (Data in this report are not seasonally adjusted. Accordingly, month-to-month changes may reflect the impact of seasonal influences.)

Over the last 12 months, the CPI-U advanced 1.4 percent. The index for all items less food and energy rose 2.3 percent over the year. (See chart 1.)

Chart 1. 12-month percent change in CPI for All Urban Consumers (CPI-U), South region, July 2009 - July 2012

Food

Food prices were unchanged in July. A small increase in prices for food away from home (0.2 percent) was offset by a decline in those for food at home (-0.1 percent).

Over the year, the index for food advanced 2.4 percent as prices for food at home and food away from home increased, up 2.1 and 2.9 percent, respectively.

Energy

The energy index fell 1.1 percent in July, reflecting lower prices for electricity (-1.8 percent) and motor fuel (-0.8 percent). Prices for utility (piped) gas service rose 0.4 percent over the month.

Over the year, energy prices decreased 6.1 percent, dominated by a 7.9-percent decline in motor fuel prices. Prices for utility (piped) gas service and electricity also both fell over the year, down 13.1 and 1.8 percent, respectively.

All items less food and energy

The index for all items less food and energy was unchanged in July. The apparel index recorded a seasonal decline of 3.1 percent; prices also decreased for new vehicles (-0.4 percent) and recreation (-0.2 percent) over the month. In contrast, prices rose for shelter and medical care, up 0.2 percent each.

Over the year, the index for all items less food and energy advanced 2.3 percent, led by price increases for shelter (2.3 percent), medical care (4.7 percent), and education and communication (2.5 percent).

The August 2012 Consumer Price Index for the South region is scheduled to be released on Friday, September 14, 2012 at 8:30 a.m. (ET).

Table A. South region CPI-U 1-month and 12-month percent changes, all items index, not seasonally adjusted
Month

2007 2008 2009 2010 2011 2012
1-month 12-month 1-month 12-month 1-month 12-month 1-month 12-month 1-month 12-month 1-month 12-month

January

0.1 1.8 0.5 4.9 0.4 -0.1 0.3 2.8 0.5 1.7 0.5 3.2

February

0.5 2.2 0.3 4.6 0.5 0.1 0.0 2.3 0.5 2.2 0.6 3.3

March

1.0 2.6 0.8 4.4 0.3 -0.3 0.6 2.5 1.2 2.8 0.7 2.8

April

0.9 2.5 0.7 4.2 0.3 -0.7 0.1 2.4 0.7 3.4 0.4 2.5

May

0.6 2.7 0.9 4.6 0.3 -1.3 0.0 2.0 0.5 4.0 -0.4 1.6

June

0.4 2.7 1.1 5.3 1.0 -1.4 -0.1 0.9 -0.2 3.8 -0.2 1.7

July

-0.1 2.3 0.5 5.8 -0.3 -2.1 -0.1 1.0 0.2 4.1 -0.2

1.4

August

-0.3 2.0 -0.4 5.6 0.1 -1.6 0.2 1.1 0.4 4.3 - -

September

0.3 3.0 0.1 5.4 0.0 -1.8 0.2 1.4 0.0 4.1 - -

October

0.2 3.8 -1.2 3.9 0.2 -0.4 0.1 1.3 -0.2 3.7 - -

November

0.6 4.7 -2.2 1.0 0.2 2.0 0.0 1.1 0.0 3.8 - -

December

0.0 4.4 -1.0 0.0 -0.1 2.9 0.2 1.4 -0.2 3.3 - -

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 88 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 87 urban areas across the country from about 4,000 housing units and approximately 26,000 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 the 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 and the BLS Handbook of Methods, Chapter 17, The Consumer Price Index, available 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 South region is comprised of Alabama, Arkansas, Delaware, District of Columbia, Florida, Georgia, Kentucky, Louisiana, Maryland, Mississippi, North Carolina, Oklahoma, South Carolina, Tennessee, Texas, Virginia, and West Virginia.

For further details visit the CPI home page on the Internet at www.bls.gov/cpi or contact our CPI Information and Analysis Section at (202) 691-7000.

Information in this release will be made available to sensory impaired individuals upon request. Voice phone: (202) 691-5200; TDD message referral phone number: (800) 877-8339.

Table 1. Consumer Price Index for All Urban Consumers (CPI-U): Indexes and percent changes for selected periods
South (1982-84=100 unless otherwise noted)
Item and Group

Indexes
Percent change from-
May
2012
Jun.
2012
Jul.
2012
Jul.
2011
May
2012
Jun.
2012

Expenditure category

All Items

223.356 223.004 222.667 1.4 -0.3 -0.2

All items (December 1977=100)

362.315 361.744 361.197

Food and beverages

231.494 231.951 231.977 2.3 0.2 0.0

Food

232.489 232.986 233.034 2.4 0.2 0.0

Food at home

229.683 229.811 229.606 2.1 0.0 -0.1

Food away from home

239.236 240.314 240.756 2.9 0.6 0.2

Alcoholic beverages

216.998 216.868 216.560 1.7 -0.2 -0.1

Housing

206.556 207.997 208.087 1.7 0.7 0.0

Shelter

230.142 230.470 231.018 2.3 0.4 0.2

Rent of primary residence (1)

231.801 231.863 232.700 2.9 0.4 0.4

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

233.465 233.718 234.211 2.1 0.3 0.2

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

233.451 233.703 234.195 2.1 0.3 0.2

Fuels and utilities

216.979 225.946 223.698 -1.3 3.1 -1.0

Household energy

181.194 190.640 187.787 -3.3 3.6 -1.5

Energy services (1)

180.548 190.530 187.611 -3.3 3.9 -1.5

Electricity (1)

180.788 191.785 188.364 -1.8 4.2 -1.8

Utility (piped) gas service (1)

163.989 166.529 167.119 -13.1 1.9 0.4

Household furnishings and operations

126.555 126.525 126.687 0.9 0.1 0.1

Apparel

136.626 134.757 130.628 1.7 -4.4 -3.1

Transportation

219.297 213.034 212.387 -1.7 -3.2 -0.3

Private transportation

217.498 211.190 210.708 -1.7 -3.1 -0.2

New and used motor vehicles (3)

102.068 102.441 102.371 0.7 0.3 -0.1

New vehicles

149.542 149.780 149.165 1.0 -0.3 -0.4

New cars and trucks (3) (4)

101.734 101.889 101.467 1.0 -0.3 -0.4

New cars (4)

153.538 153.525 152.850 0.2 -0.4 -0.4

Used cars and trucks

151.903 153.513 154.020 1.6 1.4 0.3

Motor fuel

315.190 290.491 288.059 -7.9 -8.6 -0.8

Gasoline (all types)

313.869 289.064 286.683 -8.1 -8.7 -0.8

Unleaded regular (4)

313.200 287.841 285.586 -8.3 -8.8 -0.8

Unleaded midgrade (4) (5)

326.372 301.525 298.567 -7.8 -8.5 -1.0

Unleaded premium (4)

308.201 286.322 283.928 -7.1 -7.9 -0.8

Medical care

392.786 397.266 397.983 4.7 1.3 0.2

Medical care commodities

313.349 314.938 316.520 3.7 1.0 0.5

Medical care services

419.679 425.349 425.666 5.0 1.4 0.1

Professional services

340.027 343.929 343.948 2.5 1.2 0.0

Recreation (3)

114.946 115.108 114.859 0.8 -0.1 -0.2

Education and communication (3)

130.154 130.225 130.080 2.5 -0.1 -0.1

Other goods and services

384.653 385.413 385.498 2.2 0.2 0.0

Commodity and service group

All Items

223.356 223.004 222.667 1.4 -0.3 -0.2

Commodities

190.123 187.647 186.881 0.0 -1.7 -0.4

Commodities less food and beverages

168.548 164.918 163.844 -1.3 -2.8 -0.7

Nondurables less food and beverages

224.088 216.525 214.331 -2.0 -4.4 -1.0

Nondurables less food, beverages, and apparel

277.529 266.640 265.471 -3.0 -4.3 -0.4

Durables

116.508 116.641 116.638 0.0 0.1 0.0

Services

257.634 259.297 259.363 2.3 0.7 0.0

Rent of shelter (2)

236.450 236.795 237.356 2.3 0.4 0.2

Transportation services

286.018 285.464 285.620 2.4 -0.1 0.1

Other services

311.180 311.814 311.721 2.7 0.2 0.0

Special aggregate indexes

All items less medical care

213.735 213.180 212.801 1.1 -0.4 -0.2

All items less food

221.726 221.242 220.845 1.2 -0.4 -0.2

All items less shelter

222.167 221.527 220.816 0.9 -0.6 -0.3

Commodities less food

170.232 166.682 165.624 -1.2 -2.7 -0.6

Nondurables

228.341 224.437 223.255 0.0 -2.2 -0.5

Nondurables less food

223.539 216.356 214.258 -1.8 -4.2 -1.0

Nondurables less food and apparel

271.152 261.156 260.061 -2.6 -4.1 -0.4

Services less rent of shelter (2)

292.360 295.752 295.188 2.4 1.0 -0.2

Services less medical care services

242.917 244.309 244.358 2.1 0.6 0.0

Energy

238.429 232.149 229.546 -6.1 -3.7 -1.1

All items less energy

222.259 222.610 222.541 2.3 0.1 0.0

All items less food and energy

220.842 221.168 221.077 2.3 0.1 0.0

Commodities less food and energy commodities

150.474 150.265 149.402 1.1 -0.7 -0.6

Energy commodities

319.214 294.413 291.982 -7.8 -8.5 -0.8

Services less energy services

265.621 266.295 266.713 2.7 0.4 0.2

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) Index is 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.

- Data not available.
Regions defined as the four Census regions. South includes Alabama, Arkansas, Delaware, District of Columbia, Florida, Georgia, Kentucky, Louisiana, Maryland, Mississippi, North Carolina, Oklahoma, South Carolina, Tennessee, Texas, Virginia, and West Virginia.
NOTE: Index applies to a month as a whole, not to any specific date. Data not seasonally adjusted.

Last Modified Date: August 20, 2012