Thursday, August 10, 2023
Prices in the Northeast Region, as measured by the Consumer Price Index for All Urban Consumers (CPI-U), increased by 0.2 percent in July, the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics reported today. (See table A.) Regional Commissioner Alexandra Hall Bovee noted that the July increase was primarily due to a 0.3-percent rise in the all items less food and energy index led by higher prices for shelter. The food index rose 0.2 percent while the energy index partially offset the increases and declined 0.6 percent. (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 Northeast all items CPI-U index increased 2.6 percent, slightly up from last month but well below the recent peak of 7.6 percent in June 2022. The July increase was mainly due to a 4.0-percent rise in the all items less food and energy index which—like the over-the-month rise—was led by increases within the shelter index. (See chart 1 and table A.) This is the fifth consecutive month that the 12-month change in the all items index has been lower than the all items less food and energy index. The food index continued moderating, rising only 4.6 percent (down from a peak of 10.3 percent in October), while the energy index decreased 13.6 percent, trending down for the fifth consecutive month after over 2 years of 12-month increases which peaked at 44.2 percent in June 2022. (See table 1.)Food
In July, the food index was up 0.2 percent as prices for food at home rose at the same rate.(See table 1.) Within food at home, prices for cereals and bakery products were up 0.9 percent after declining 0.3 percent last month. The dairy and related products index rose 1.3 percent, mainly due to increased prices for cheese, ice cream and related products. The fruits and vegetables index increased 0.7 percent as prices for apples and potatoes rose. Two grocery categories had decreased prices: meats, poultry, fish, and eggs (-0.4 percent, down for the sixth consecutive month) and nonalcoholic beverages and beverage materials (down 0.7 percent). The food away from home index also rose 0.2 percent over the month—so far in 2023, monthly percent changes in this index have ranged from 0.2 to 0.6 percent.
From July 2022 to July 2023, the food index increased 4.6 percent, the smallest rise since September 2021, led by the food away from home index (up 6.8 percent). Prices for food at home increased 3.4 percent; the index has moderated each month since January 2023 and was well below the recent peak of 12.0 percent last August. Within this grocery category, the other food at home index (which includes products like sweets, fats, and snacks) rose 5.9 percent, also below its recent peak of 14.0 percent in October 2022. The cereals and bakery products index was up 7.7 percent, the smallest increase since January 2022. The only grocery index to decrease was meats, poultry, fish, and eggs (down 2.2 percent, the largest over-the-year decrease since the index began in 2018).Energy
The energy index decreased 0.6 percent in July, down for the fifth month in 2023 after rising 1.5 percent in June. This was due to a 2.8-percent decline in the electricity index and a 1.0-percent decrease in the utility (piped) gas service index. The energy index decline was tempered by higher prices for gasoline, up 0.8 percent over the month, and fuel oil.
Over the year, energy prices were down 13.6 percent as most of the index components declined. The primary cause was the 21.3-percent decrease in the gasoline index, as prices for gasoline were lower than the year before for the sixth consecutive month. The utility (piped) gas service index was down 17.6 percent, comparable to last month’s 17.2-percent decrease, and the fuel oil index also declined. Only the electricity index increased over the year, up 6.1 percent, but well below the recent peak of 23.2 percent in February 2023.All items less food and energy
The index for all items less food and energy rose 0.3 percent in July, the same as it had been for the previous three months. The July rise was mainly due to the 0.4-percent increase in the shelter index which was dominated by the owners’ equivalent rent of residences index (up 0.7 percent). Also in shelter, the index for rent of primary residence was up 0.5 percent. The education and communication index increased 0.3 percent as prices for tuition, other school fees, and childcare rose 1.0 percent (the largest monthly increase in this index since August 2021). Some indexes declined and tempered the overall rise such as public transportation, lodging away from home (within the shelter index), and apparel (which typically declines every July).
Over the year, the index for all items less food and energy was up 4.0 percent. Changes for the all items less food and energy index have ranged from 3.8 percent to 5.1 percent so far in 2023. Like the monthly change, higher prices for shelter (up 6.5 percent) made up most of the rise as the owners’ equivalent rent of residences and rent of primary residence indexes were both up 6.7 percent. The medical care index countered the overall increase, down 2.8 percent, marking the fifth consecutive month of accelerating decreases for the index. Within medical care, the medical care services index decreased 3.9 percent while the medical care commodities index was up 2.9 percent.Geographic divisions
Additional price indexes are available for the two divisions of the Northeast. Over the month, the all items CPI-U index for the Middle Atlantic division increased 0.3 percent. The CPI-U for the New England division decreased 0.1 percent.
Over the year, the all items index rose 2.8 percent in the Middle Atlantic division and 2.1 percent in the New England division. (See table B.)
|Area||1-month change||12-month change|
New England Division
Middle Atlantic Division
The August 2023 Consumer Price Index for the Northeast Region is scheduled to be released on September 13, 2023.
The Consumer Price Index for the Northeast Region is published monthly. 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 93 percent of the total U.S. population and (2) a CPI for Urban Wage Earners and Clerical Workers (CPI-W) which covers approximately 29 percent of the total U.S. 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, 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 75 urban areas across the country from about 6,000 housing units and approximately 22,000 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; for most of the CPI-U the reference base is 1982-84 equals 100. An increase of 7 percent from the reference base, for example, is shown as 107.000. Alternatively, that relationship can also be expressed as the price of a base period market basket of goods and services rising from $100 to $107. For further details see the CPI home page on the internet at www.bls.gov/cpi and the CPI section of the BLS Handbook of Methods available on the internet at www.bls.gov/opub/hom/cpi/.
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 Northeast region is comprised of Connecticut, Maine, Massachusetts, New Hampshire, New Jersey, New York, Pennsylvania, Rhode Island, and Vermont.
The New England division is comprised of Connecticut, Maine, Massachusetts, New Hampshire, Rhode Island, and Vermont.
The Middle Atlantic division is comprised of New Jersey, New York, and Pennsylvania.
Information in this release will be made available to individuals with sensory impairments upon request. Voice phone: (202) 691-5200; Telecommunications Relay Service: 7-1-1.
|Expenditure category||Indexes||Percent change from|
All items (December 1977 = 100)
Food and beverages
Food at home
Cereals and bakery products
Meats, poultry, fish, and eggs
Dairy and related products
Fruits and vegetables
Nonalcoholic beverages and beverage materials
Other food at home
Food away from home
Rent of primary residence
Owners' equivalent rent of residences(1)
Owners' equivalent rent of primary residence(1)
Fuels and utilities
Utility (piped) gas service
Household furnishings and operations
New and used motor vehicles(2)
Used cars and trucks
Gasoline (all types)
Gasoline, unleaded regular(3)
Gasoline, unleaded premium(3)
Medical care commodities
Medical care services
Education and communication(2)
Tuition, other school fees, and child care(5)
Other goods and services
Commodity and service group
Commodities less food and beverages
Nondurables less food and beverages
Special aggregate indexes
All items less shelter
All items less medical care
Commodities less food
Nondurables less food
Services less rent of shelter(1)
Services less medical care services
All items less energy
All items less food and energy
Last Modified Date: Thursday, August 10, 2023