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14-2135-SAN November 20, 2014

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Technical information:
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  • (415) 625-2270

Consumer Price Index, Seattle area – October 2014

Area prices were up 0.3 percent over the past two months, up 2.1 percent from a year ago

Prices in the greater Seattle Area, as measured by the Consumer Price Index for All Urban Consumers (CPI-U), advanced 0.3 percent for the two months ending October 2014, the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics reported today. (See table A.) Regional Commissioner Richard J. Holden noted that the October increase was influenced by higher prices for shelter and food. (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 2.1 percent. (See chart 1.) Energy prices declined 1.0 percent, largely the result of a decrease in the price of gasoline. The index for all items less food and energy increased 2.2 percent since October 2013.

 Chart 1. Over-the-year percent change in CPI-U, Seattle, October 2011-October 2014

 

Food

Food prices increased 1.5 percent from August to October. (See table 1.) Prices for food at home increased 1.9 percent, and prices for food away from home moved up 0.9 percent for the same period.

Over the year, food prices rose 3.1 percent. Prices for food at home advanced 3.7 percent since a year ago, and prices for food away from home increased 2.3 percent.

Energy

The energy index decreased 7.6 percent for the two months ending in October 2014. The decrease was mainly due to lower prices for gasoline (-11.2 percent). Prices for electricity declined 1.7 percent, and prices for natural gas service inched down 0.1 percent in the past two months.

Energy prices declined 1.0 percent over the year, largely due to lower prices for gasoline (-1.4 percent). Prices paid for natural gas service declined 0.3 percent, but prices for electricity edged up 0.1 percent during the past year.

All items less food and energy

The index for all items less food and energy rose 0.8 percent in the latest two-month period. Higher prices for household furnishings and operations (3.6 percent), other goods and services (1.0 percent), and shelter (0.8 percent) were partially offset by lower prices for apparel (-1.1 percent).

Over the year, the index for all items less food and energy increased 2.2 percent. Components contributing to the increase included shelter (5.2 percent) and household furnishings and operations (1.7 percent). Partly offsetting the increases were price declines in apparel (-2.0 percent) and medical care (-0.9 percent).

Table A. Seattle-Tacoma-Bremerton CPI-U bi-monthly and annual percent changes (not seasonally adjusted)
Month 2009 2010 2011 2012 2013 2014
Bi-monthly Annual Bi-monthly Annual Bi-monthly Annual Bi-monthly Annual Bi-monthly Annual Bi-monthly Annual

February

1.0 1.4 0.2 0.6 1.2 1.5 0.4 2.7 0.8 1.8 0.7 1.2

April

0.5 1.2 0.2 0.3 0.8 2.1 0.9 2.9 0.4 1.2 1.6 2.4

June

0.6 -0.4 -0.2 -0.5 0.8 3.2 0.7 2.7 0.8 1.4 0.4 2.0

August

-0.1 -0.3 0.7 0.2 0.2 2.7 0.3 2.7 0.0 1.1 -0.2 1.8

October

-0.4 0.2 -0.2 0.4 0.9 3.8 0.5 2.3 0.0 0.6 0.3 2.1

December

-0.3 1.4 -0.2 0.6 -0.5 3.5 -1.4 1.4 -0.7 1.3    

 

CPI-W

In October, the Consumer Price Index for Urban Wage Earners and Clerical Workers (CPI-W) was 244.289, down 0.1 percent from August. The CPI-W increased 2.1 percent over the year.

The December 2014 Consumer Price Index for the Seattle-Tacoma-Bremerton is scheduled to be released on January 16, 2015 at 10:00 a.m. (PST).


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 89 percent of the total population and (2) a CPI for Urban Wage Earners and Clerical Workers (CPI-W) which covers 28 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 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 Seattle-Tacoma-Bremerton, WA. metropolitan area covered in this release is comprised of Island, King, Kitsap, Pierce, Snohomish, and Thurston Counties in the State of Washington.

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

Seattle-Tacoma-Bremerton, WA (1982-84=100 unless otherwise noted)
Item and Group

 
Indexes
 
Percent change from-
Aug.
2014
Sep.
2014
Oct.
2014
Oct.
2013
Aug.
2014
Sep.
2014

Expenditure category

 
 

All items

247.185 - 247.854 2.1 0.3 -

All items (1967=100)

753.515 - 755.556 - - -

Food and beverages

251.651 - 255.312 3.1 1.5 -

Food

254.356 - 258.088 3.1 1.5 -

Food at home

243.270 246.129 247.891 3.7 1.9 0.7

Food away from home

271.967 - 274.364 2.3 0.9 -

Alcoholic beverages

219.352 - 222.233 2.9 1.3 -

Housing

262.961 - 265.316 4.4 0.9 -

Shelter

293.361 293.370 295.754 5.2 0.8 0.8

Rent of primary residence (1)

294.088 295.688 299.349 5.8 1.8 1.2

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

305.695 307.565 309.846 4.8 1.4 0.7

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

305.695 307.565 309.846 4.8 1.4 0.7

Fuels and utilities

245.025 - 242.516 1.0 -1.0 -

Household energy

224.812 224.948 222.046 -0.6 -1.2 -1.3

Energy services (1)

264.627 264.627 260.811 0.0 -1.4 -1.4

Electricity (1)

278.135 278.135 273.320 0.1 -1.7 -1.7

Utility (piped) gas service (1)

181.528 181.528 181.431 -0.3 -0.1 -0.1

Household furnishings and operations

170.341 - 176.461 1.7 3.6 -

Apparel

132.457 - 131.034 -2.0 -1.1 -

Transportation

232.224 - 225.988 -0.8 -2.7 -

Private transportation

244.922 - 234.493 -0.7 -4.3 -

Motor fuel

415.481 406.510 369.406 -1.4 -11.1 -9.1

Gasoline (all types)

423.981 414.469 376.308 -1.4 -11.2 -9.2

Gasoline, unleaded regular (3)

466.790 456.001 413.707 -1.2 -11.4 -9.3

Gasoline, unleaded midgrade (3) (4)

325.075 318.582 289.853 -1.8 -10.8 -9.0

Gasoline, unleaded premium (3)

370.684 362.723 329.894 -1.7 -11.0 -9.1

Medical care

- - 379.975 -0.9 - -

Recreation (5)

95.960 - 96.519 -0.1 0.6 -

Education and communication (5)

138.462 - 139.337 1.1 0.6 -

Other goods and services

396.334 - 400.244 0.1 1.0 -
 

Commodity and service group

 
 

All items

247.185 - 247.854 2.1 0.3 -

Commodities

196.227 - 194.579 -0.2 -0.8 -

Commodities less food & beverages

167.938 - 163.971 -2.4 -2.4 -

Nondurables less food & beverages

206.163 - 198.004 -2.8 -4.0 -

Durables

129.046 - 129.225 -1.7 0.1 -

Services

295.122 - 297.855 3.5 0.9 -
 

Special aggregate indexes

 
 

All items less medical care

241.196 - 241.886 2.3 0.3 -

All items less shelter

230.237 - 230.188 0.6 0.0 -

Commodities less food

170.191 - 166.491 -2.1 -2.2 -

Nondurables

228.273 - 225.673 0.2 -1.1 -

Nondurables less food

207.589 - 200.261 -2.3 -3.5 -

Services less rent of shelter (2)

304.823 - 308.030 1.6 1.1 -

Services less medical care services

286.160 - 289.029 3.9 1.0 -

Energy

327.589 323.100 302.738 -1.0 -7.6 -6.3

All items less energy

244.849 - 247.131 2.3 0.9 -

All items less food and energy

243.471 - 245.515 2.2 0.8 -

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 November 1982=100 base.
(3) Special index based on a substantially smaller sample.
(4) Indexes on a December 1993=100 base.
(5) Indexes on a December 1997=100 base.
 

- Data not available
NOTE: Index applies to a month as a whole, not to any specific date.
 

Last Modified Date: Thursday, November 20, 2014

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News Release Information

14-2135-SAN November 20, 2014

Contacts

Technical information:
Media contact:
  • (415) 625-2270

Consumer Price Index, Seattle area – October 2014

Area prices were up 0.3 percent over the past two months, up 2.1 percent from a year ago

Prices in the greater Seattle Area, as measured by the Consumer Price Index for All Urban Consumers (CPI-U), advanced 0.3 percent for the two months ending October 2014, the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics reported today. (See table A.) Regional Commissioner Richard J. Holden noted that the October increase was influenced by higher prices for shelter and food. (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 2.1 percent. (See chart 1.) Energy prices declined 1.0 percent, largely the result of a decrease in the price of gasoline. The index for all items less food and energy increased 2.2 percent since October 2013.

 Chart 1. Over-the-year percent change in CPI-U, Seattle, October 2011-October 2014

 

Food

Food prices increased 1.5 percent from August to October. (See table 1.) Prices for food at home increased 1.9 percent, and prices for food away from home moved up 0.9 percent for the same period.

Over the year, food prices rose 3.1 percent. Prices for food at home advanced 3.7 percent since a year ago, and prices for food away from home increased 2.3 percent.

Energy

The energy index decreased 7.6 percent for the two months ending in October 2014. The decrease was mainly due to lower prices for gasoline (-11.2 percent). Prices for electricity declined 1.7 percent, and prices for natural gas service inched down 0.1 percent in the past two months.

Energy prices declined 1.0 percent over the year, largely due to lower prices for gasoline (-1.4 percent). Prices paid for natural gas service declined 0.3 percent, but prices for electricity edged up 0.1 percent during the past year.

All items less food and energy

The index for all items less food and energy rose 0.8 percent in the latest two-month period. Higher prices for household furnishings and operations (3.6 percent), other goods and services (1.0 percent), and shelter (0.8 percent) were partially offset by lower prices for apparel (-1.1 percent).

Over the year, the index for all items less food and energy increased 2.2 percent. Components contributing to the increase included shelter (5.2 percent) and household furnishings and operations (1.7 percent). Partly offsetting the increases were price declines in apparel (-2.0 percent) and medical care (-0.9 percent).

Table A. Seattle-Tacoma-Bremerton CPI-U bi-monthly and annual percent changes (not seasonally adjusted)
Month 2009 2010 2011 2012 2013 2014
Bi-monthly Annual Bi-monthly Annual Bi-monthly Annual Bi-monthly Annual Bi-monthly Annual Bi-monthly Annual

February

1.0 1.4 0.2 0.6 1.2 1.5 0.4 2.7 0.8 1.8 0.7 1.2

April

0.5 1.2 0.2 0.3 0.8 2.1 0.9 2.9 0.4 1.2 1.6 2.4

June

0.6 -0.4 -0.2 -0.5 0.8 3.2 0.7 2.7 0.8 1.4 0.4 2.0

August

-0.1 -0.3 0.7 0.2 0.2 2.7 0.3 2.7 0.0 1.1 -0.2 1.8

October

-0.4 0.2 -0.2 0.4 0.9 3.8 0.5 2.3 0.0 0.6 0.3 2.1

December

-0.3 1.4 -0.2 0.6 -0.5 3.5 -1.4 1.4 -0.7 1.3    

 

CPI-W

In October, the Consumer Price Index for Urban Wage Earners and Clerical Workers (CPI-W) was 244.289, down 0.1 percent from August. The CPI-W increased 2.1 percent over the year.

The December 2014 Consumer Price Index for the Seattle-Tacoma-Bremerton is scheduled to be released on January 16, 2015 at 10:00 a.m. (PST).


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 89 percent of the total population and (2) a CPI for Urban Wage Earners and Clerical Workers (CPI-W) which covers 28 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 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 Seattle-Tacoma-Bremerton, WA. metropolitan area covered in this release is comprised of Island, King, Kitsap, Pierce, Snohomish, and Thurston Counties in the State of Washington.

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

Seattle-Tacoma-Bremerton, WA (1982-84=100 unless otherwise noted)
Item and Group

 
Indexes
 
Percent change from-
Aug.
2014
Sep.
2014
Oct.
2014
Oct.
2013
Aug.
2014
Sep.
2014

Expenditure category

 
 

All items

247.185 - 247.854 2.1 0.3 -

All items (1967=100)

753.515 - 755.556 - - -

Food and beverages

251.651 - 255.312 3.1 1.5 -

Food

254.356 - 258.088 3.1 1.5 -

Food at home

243.270 246.129 247.891 3.7 1.9 0.7

Food away from home

271.967 - 274.364 2.3 0.9 -

Alcoholic beverages

219.352 - 222.233 2.9 1.3 -

Housing

262.961 - 265.316 4.4 0.9 -

Shelter

293.361 293.370 295.754 5.2 0.8 0.8

Rent of primary residence (1)

294.088 295.688 299.349 5.8 1.8 1.2

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

305.695 307.565 309.846 4.8 1.4 0.7

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

305.695 307.565 309.846 4.8 1.4 0.7

Fuels and utilities

245.025 - 242.516 1.0 -1.0 -

Household energy

224.812 224.948 222.046 -0.6 -1.2 -1.3

Energy services (1)

264.627 264.627 260.811 0.0 -1.4 -1.4

Electricity (1)

278.135 278.135 273.320 0.1 -1.7 -1.7

Utility (piped) gas service (1)

181.528 181.528 181.431 -0.3 -0.1 -0.1

Household furnishings and operations

170.341 - 176.461 1.7 3.6 -

Apparel

132.457 - 131.034 -2.0 -1.1 -

Transportation

232.224 - 225.988 -0.8 -2.7 -

Private transportation

244.922 - 234.493 -0.7 -4.3 -

Motor fuel

415.481 406.510 369.406 -1.4 -11.1 -9.1

Gasoline (all types)

423.981 414.469 376.308 -1.4 -11.2 -9.2

Gasoline, unleaded regular (3)

466.790 456.001 413.707 -1.2 -11.4 -9.3

Gasoline, unleaded midgrade (3) (4)

325.075 318.582 289.853 -1.8 -10.8 -9.0

Gasoline, unleaded premium (3)

370.684 362.723 329.894 -1.7 -11.0 -9.1

Medical care

- - 379.975 -0.9 - -

Recreation (5)

95.960 - 96.519 -0.1 0.6 -

Education and communication (5)

138.462 - 139.337 1.1 0.6 -

Other goods and services

396.334 - 400.244 0.1 1.0 -
 

Commodity and service group

 
 

All items

247.185 - 247.854 2.1 0.3 -

Commodities

196.227 - 194.579 -0.2 -0.8 -

Commodities less food & beverages

167.938 - 163.971 -2.4 -2.4 -

Nondurables less food & beverages

206.163 - 198.004 -2.8 -4.0 -

Durables

129.046 - 129.225 -1.7 0.1 -

Services

295.122 - 297.855 3.5 0.9 -
 

Special aggregate indexes

 
 

All items less medical care

241.196 - 241.886 2.3 0.3 -

All items less shelter

230.237 - 230.188 0.6 0.0 -

Commodities less food

170.191 - 166.491 -2.1 -2.2 -

Nondurables

228.273 - 225.673 0.2 -1.1 -

Nondurables less food

207.589 - 200.261 -2.3 -3.5 -

Services less rent of shelter (2)

304.823 - 308.030 1.6 1.1 -

Services less medical care services

286.160 - 289.029 3.9 1.0 -

Energy

327.589 323.100 302.738 -1.0 -7.6 -6.3

All items less energy

244.849 - 247.131 2.3 0.9 -

All items less food and energy

243.471 - 245.515 2.2 0.8 -

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 November 1982=100 base.
(3) Special index based on a substantially smaller sample.
(4) Indexes on a December 1993=100 base.
(5) Indexes on a December 1997=100 base.
 

- Data not available
NOTE: Index applies to a month as a whole, not to any specific date.
 

Last Modified Date: Thursday, November 20, 2014