Southwest Information Office

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14-1458-DAL

Tuesday, August 19, 2014

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Further information:

Consumer Price Index, West Region – July 2014

Area prices were up 0.1 percent over the past month, up 2.3 percent from a year ago


Prices in the West Region, as measured by the Consumer Price Index for All Urban Consumers (CPI-U), edged up 0.1 percent in July, the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics reported today. (See table A.) Regional Commissioner Stanley W. Suchman noted that the July index was strongly influenced by higher prices for shelter and lower prices for apparel. (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 2.3 percent. (See chart 1.) Energy prices increased 3.0 percent, largely the result of increases in prices for natural gas service and electricity. The index for all items less food and energy rose 2.2 percent since July 2013.

Chart 1. Over-the-year percent change in CPI for All Urban Consumers (CPI-U), West region, July 2011–July 2014


Food

Food prices advanced 0.5 percent for the month of July. (See table 1.) Prices for food at home increased 0.7 percent, and prices for food away from home increased 0.3 percent for the same period.

Over the year, food prices rose 2.9 percent. Prices for food at home rose 3.2 percent since a year ago, and prices for food away from home advanced 2.4 percent.

Energy

The energy index edged up 0.2 percent over the month. The increase was mainly due to higher prices for natural gas service (3.6 percent). Prices for gasoline were unchanged, while prices for electricity declined 0.6 percent in July.

Energy prices rose 3.0 percent over the year, as all three of the primary energy sources contributed to the increase. Prices were higher for natural gas service (13.3 percent), electricity (3.4 percent), and gasoline (1.1 percent).

All items less food and energy

The index for all items less food and energy was unchanged in July. Among the expenditure categories posting higher prices were used cars and trucks (0.6 percent), other goods and services (0.5 percent), and shelter (0.4 percent). In contrast, lower prices were recorded for apparel (-2.9 percent) and household furnishings and operations (-0.4 percent).

Over the year, the index for all items less food and energy rose 2.2 percent. Components contributing to the increase included shelter (3.5 percent) and medical care (2.7 percent). Partly offsetting the increases was a decline in the household furnishings and operations index (-1.0 percent).


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

2009 2010 2011 2012 2013 2014
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

0.6 0.1 0.3 1.9 0.5 1.4 0.4 2.6 0.3 1.7 0.3 1.7

February

0.5 0.3 0.1 1.4 0.6 1.9 0.4 2.5 0.8 2.0 0.4 1.3

March

0.1 -0.5 0.3 1.6 0.9 2.6 0.9 2.4 0.4 1.5 0.6 1.5

April

0.3 -0.7 0.2 1.5 0.6 3.0 0.2 2.1 0.0 1.3 0.3 1.8

May

0.3 -1.1 0.1 1.3 0.3 3.2 0.2 2.0 0.2 1.3 0.6 2.3

June

0.6 -1.4 -0.1 0.6 -0.2 3.1 -0.2 2.0 0.1 1.5 0.1 2.3

July

-0.2 -2.0 0.1 0.8 -0.1 2.9 -0.3 1.8 0.0 1.9 0.1 2.3

August

0.2 -1.3 0.1 0.7 0.2 3.0 0.5 2.1 0.1 1.5 - -

September

0.2 -0.8 -0.1 0.5 0.4 3.5 0.5 2.2 0.2 1.3 - -

October

0.1 -0.3 0.1 0.6 0.0 3.4 0.4 2.5 -0.1 0.9 - -

November

-0.3 1.2 0.0 0.9 -0.2 3.2 -0.7 1.9 -0.4 1.3 - -

December

-0.2 2.2 0.2 1.3 -0.3 2.7 -0.5 1.7 0.0 1.8 - -
_______________________
The August 2014 Consumer Price Index for the West Region is scheduled to be released on September 17, 2014 at 7:30 a.m.(CT).



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 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/pdf/homch17.pdf.

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: 1-800-877-8339.



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

Indexes
Percent change from-
May
2014
Jun.
2014
Jul.
2014
Jul.
2013
May
2014
Jun.
2014

Expenditure category

All Items

241.350 241.616 241.850 2.3 0.2 0.1

All items (December 1977=100)

390.129 390.559 390.937

Food and beverages

244.121 243.685 244.859 2.7 0.3 0.5

Food

244.112 243.751 245.036 2.9 0.4 0.5

Food at home

244.742 243.731 245.467 3.2 0.3 0.7

Food away from home

242.022 242.580 243.223 2.4 0.5 0.3

Alcoholic beverages

240.886 239.503 239.247 0.0 -0.7 -0.1

Housing

245.240 246.075 247.034 3.2 0.7 0.4

Shelter

274.974 275.658 276.821 3.5 0.7 0.4

Rent of primary residence (1)

286.829 287.719 289.131 4.1 0.8 0.5

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

288.271 289.005 290.111 3.2 0.6 0.4

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

288.267 289.004 290.108 3.2 0.6 0.4

Fuels and utilities

276.167 278.616 281.080 5.4 1.8 0.9

Household energy

247.385 250.490 251.911 5.9 1.8 0.6

Energy services (1)

249.323 252.673 253.755 5.7 1.8 0.4

Electricity (1)

272.761 277.844 276.262 3.4 1.3 -0.6

Utility (piped) gas service (1)

209.205 208.627 216.145 13.3 3.3 3.6

Household furnishings and operations

128.370 128.983 128.481 -1.0 0.1 -0.4

Apparel

122.019 122.001 118.482 0.7 -2.9 -2.9

Transportation

223.474 223.193 222.358 0.8 -0.5 -0.4

Private transportation

216.237 216.049 216.413 0.9 0.1 0.2

New and used motor vehicles (3)

101.789 101.441 101.809 -0.3 0.0 0.4

New vehicles

146.155 145.146 145.215 0.4 -0.6 0.0

New cars and trucks (3) (4)

101.531 100.888 100.938 0.5 -0.6 0.0

New cars (4)

146.905 145.722 145.885 0.1 -0.7 0.1

Used cars and trucks

147.301 147.832 148.716 0.2 1.0 0.6

Motor fuel

320.652 320.396 320.394 1.3 -0.1 0.0

Gasoline (all types)

319.416 319.168 319.174 1.1 -0.1 0.0

Unleaded regular (4)

318.600 318.338 318.485 1.2 0.0 0.0

Unleaded midgrade (4) (5)

299.443 299.070 299.040 1.0 -0.1 0.0

Unleaded premium (4)

302.887 302.658 301.920 0.8 -0.3 -0.2

Medical Care

439.753 440.898 440.896 2.7 0.3 0.0

Medical care commodities

328.910 331.821 331.634 1.8 0.8 -0.1

Medical care services

475.352 475.762 475.835 2.9 0.1 0.0

Professional services

332.169 331.143 330.687 1.6 -0.4 -0.1

Recreation (3)

110.399 110.373 110.377 1.2 0.0 0.0

Education and communication (3)

138.345 138.455 138.469 1.4 0.1 0.0

Other goods and services

397.420 396.164 398.041 1.7 0.2 0.5

Commodity and Service Group

All Items

241.350 241.616 241.850 2.3 0.2 0.1

Commodities

186.363 186.172 185.993 0.9 -0.2 -0.1

Commodities less food & beverages

156.096 156.012 155.281 -0.3 -0.5 -0.5

Nondurables less food & beverages

204.650 204.774 203.310 0.6 -0.7 -0.7

Nondurables less food, beverages, and apparel

262.494 262.715 262.590 0.4 0.0 0.0

Durables

111.366 111.093 111.029 -1.3 -0.3 -0.1

Services

291.656 292.360 292.990 3.2 0.5 0.2

Rent of shelter (2)

292.497 293.237 294.459 3.5 0.7 0.4

Transportation services

283.792 283.932 280.388 2.1 -1.2 -1.2

Other services

332.869 332.866 333.523 2.4 0.2 0.2

Special aggregate indexes:

All items less medical care

232.194 232.424 232.666 2.3 0.2 0.1

All items less food

241.111 241.477 241.544 2.2 0.2 0.0

All items less shelter

229.195 229.285 229.125 1.7 0.0 -0.1

Commodities less food

159.521 159.398 158.677 -0.3 -0.5 -0.5

Nondurables

225.581 225.444 225.201 1.6 -0.2 -0.1

Nondurables less food

207.865 207.900 206.501 0.5 -0.7 -0.7

Nondurables less food and apparel

260.016 260.082 259.945 0.3 0.0 -0.1

Services less rent of shelter (2)

323.794 324.531 324.457 2.9 0.2 0.0

Services less medical care services

278.903 279.619 280.276 3.3 0.5 0.2

Energy

290.668 291.935 292.578 3.0 0.7 0.2

All items less energy

239.570 239.762 239.967 2.3 0.2 0.1

All items less food and energy

239.528 239.818 239.834 2.2 0.1 0.0

Commodities less food and energy commodities

141.386 141.290 140.437 -0.5 -0.7 -0.6

Energy commodities

324.614 324.253 324.557 1.5 0.0 0.1

Services less energy services

295.086 295.623 296.226 3.1 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.

Regions defined as the four Census regions. West includes Alaska, Arizona, California, Colorado, Hawaii, Idaho, Montana, Nevada, New Mexico, Oregon, Utah, Washington, and Wyoming.
- Data not available.
NOTE: Index applies to a month as a whole, not to any specific date. Data not seasonally adjusted.

Last Modified Date: August 19, 2014