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Monday, July 7, 2014

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Average Energy Prices, Chicago-Gary-Kenosha – May 2014


Gasoline prices averaged $3.920 a gallon in the Chicago-Gary-Kenosha area in May 2014, the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics reported today. Regional Commissioner Charlene Peiffer noted that area gasoline prices were down 33.1 cents compared to last May when they averaged $4.251 per gallon. Chicago area households paid an average of 13.9 cents per kilowatt hour (kWh) of electricity in May 2014, up from 13.1 cents per kWh in May 2013. The average cost of utility (piped) gas at $1.214 per therm in May was up from 89.7 cents per therm a year earlier. (Data in this release are not seasonally adjusted; accordingly, over-the-year-analysis is used throughout.)

At $3.920 a gallon, costs for gasoline in the Chicago area were 17.5 cents, or 4.7 percent above the national average of $3.745 a gallon in May 2014. A year earlier, consumers in the Chicago area paid prices 15.5 percent above the national average. The local price of a gallon of gasoline has exceeded the national average by 4.7 percent or more in the month of May in each of the five past years. (See chart 1.)

Chart 1. Average prices for gasoline, Chicago-Gary-Kenosha and the United States, 2010-2014 (as of May)

The 13.9 cents per kWh that Chicago households paid for electricity in May 2014 was comparable to the nationwide average cost of 13.6 cents per kWh. Last May, electricity costs in Chicago were also comparable to the nation. With the exception of the two most recent Mays, Chicago area electricity prices have exceeded the national average by 8.7 percent or more over the past five Mays. (See chart 2.)

Chart 2. Average prices for electricity, Chicago-Gary-Kenosha and the United States, 2010-2014 (as of May)

Prices paid by Chicago area consumers for utility (piped) gas, commonly referred to as natural gas, were $1.214 per therm in May 2014, 9.3 percent above the national average of $1.111 per therm. With the exception of this May, utility (piped) gas prices in the Chicago area have ranged from 13.4 percent to 34.0 percent below the national average over the past five Mays. (See chart 3.)

Chart 3. Average prices for utility (piped) gas, Chicago-Gary-Kenosha and the United States, 2010-2014 (as of May)

The Chicago-Gary-Kenosha, Ill.-Ind.-Wis. Consolidated Metropolitan Statistical Area (CMSA) consists of Cook, De Kalb, Du Page, Grundy, Kane, Kankakee, Kendall, Lake, McHenry, and Will Counties in Illinois; Lake and Porter Counties in Indiana; and Kenosha County in Wisconsin.

Historical average energy prices for the U.S. and select metropolitan areas are available at www.bls.gov/ro5/ro5econ1.htm.


Technical Note

Average prices are estimated from Consumer Price Index (CPI) data for selected commodity series to support the research and analytic needs of CPI data users. Average prices for electricity, utility (piped) gas, and gasoline are published monthly for the U.S. city average, the 4 regions, the 3 population size classes, 10 region/size-class cross-classifications, and the 14 largest local index areas. For electricity, average prices per kilowatt-hour (kWh) are published. For utility (piped) gas, average prices per therm are published. For gasoline, the average price per gallon is published. Average prices for commonly available grades of gasoline are published as well as the average price across all grades.

All eligible prices are converted to a price per normalized quantity. These prices are then used to estimate a price for a defined fixed quantity. The average price per kilowatt-hour represents the total bill divided by the kilowatt-hour usage. The total bill is the sum of all items applicable to all consumers appearing on an electricity bill including, but not limited to, variable rates per kWh, fixed costs, taxes, surcharges, and credits. This calculation also applies to the average price per therm for utility (piped) gas.

Information from 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. Average prices for gasoline, electricity, and utility (piped) gas, Chicago-Gary-Kenosha and the United States, May 2013 - May 2014, not seasonally adjusted
Year and month Gasoline per gallon Electricity per kWh Utility (piped) gas per therm
Chicago area United States Chicago area United States Chicago area United States
2013

May

$4.251 $3.682 $0.131 $0.131 $0.897 $1.036

June

4.312 3.693 0.124 0.137 0.917 1.038

July

4.001 3.687 0.125 0.137 0.944 1.025

August

3.874 3.658 0.126 0.137 0.933 1.003

September

3.830 3.616 0.126 0.137 0.909 1.000

October

NA 3.434 0.125 0.132 0.883 0.999

November

3.436 3.310 0.125 0.130 0.877 0.999

December

3.396 3.333 0.125 0.131 0.871 0.998
2014

January

3.545 3.378 0.138 0.134 0.909 1.040

February

3.603 3.422 0.138 0.134 0.969 1.078

March

3.919 3.590 0.138 0.135 1.269 1.154

April

4.044 3.717 0.139 0.131 1.394 1.137

May

3.920 3.745 0.139 0.136 1.214 1.111
NA - Data not adequate for publication.

Last Modified Date: July 7, 2014