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News Release Information

21-1089-PHI
Thursday, June 10, 2021

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Consumer Price Index, Northeast Region – May 2021

Regional prices up 0.6 percent over the month; up 3.9 percent over the year

The Consumer Price Index for All Urban Consumers (CPI-U) in the Northeast increased 0.6 percent in May, the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics reported today. Regional Commissioner Alexandra Hall Bovee noted that the recent increase was largely due to rising prices for both used cars and trucks and public transportation. These were reflected in the advance in the all items less food and energy index (0.5 percent) since April. The energy index and the food index also increased over the month, up 2.0 and 0.2 percent, respectively. (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 advanced 3.9 percent, the index’s largest over-the-year increase since September 2011. (See chart 1 and table A.) This reflected advances in the all items less food and energy index, up 3.0 percent, and the energy index, up 22.7 percent. The food index also rose since May 2020, up 1.3 percent. (See table 1.)

Food

The food index increased 0.2 percent since April. Prices were higher for food at home, up 0.4 percent, as prices rose for items such as chicken and uncooked beef steaks. The food away from home index was unchanged over the month.

From May 2020 to May 2021, the food index increased 1.3 percent. Prices for food away from home increased over the year, up 3.6 percent; those for food at home declined 0.4 percent.

Energy

The energy index, which includes prices for household and transportation fuels, rose 2.0 percent in May, due to a 4.8-percent advance in gasoline prices. Prices were also higher for electricity (1.1 percent), while those for utility (piped) gas service fell 3.3 percent over the month.

The energy index rose 22.7 percent since May 2020—the index’s largest over-the-year increase since September 2008. The increase reflected a jump in prices for gasoline (45.0 percent)—the index’s largest 12-month advance since January 2010. Prices for electricity and utility (piped) gas service also advanced over the year, up 4.0 and 6.4 percent, respectively.

All items less food and energy

The index for all items less food and energy increased 0.5 percent since April. Prices were higher for new and used motor vehicles (2.8 percent), particularly those for used cars and trucks (6.5 percent), and for public transportation (9.5 percent). Lower prices for recreation and other goods and services helped to moderate the overall rise, down 0.5 and 0.6 percent, respectively.

The index for all items less food and energy increased 3.0 percent since May 2020. Prices were higher for new and used motor vehicles (12.8 percent), particularly those for used cars and trucks (30.1 percent) which had the largest 12-month increase since the index was first published in 1978. Prices also increased for shelter (1.8 percent), among others, while recreation declined, down 2.4 percent.

Table A. Northeast region CPI-U 1-month and 12-month percent changes, all items index, not seasonally adjusted
Month 2017 2018 2019 2020 2021
1-month 12-month 1-month 12-month 1-month 12-month 1-month 12-month 1-month 12-month

January

0.6 2.5 0.5 1.6 0.3 1.5 0.7 2.3 0.4 1.1

February

0.3 2.6 0.4 1.7 0.2 1.3 0.3 2.4 0.4 1.2

March

-0.1 2.2 0.1 2.0 0.5 1.7 -02 1.7 0.6 2.1

April

0.3 1.9 0.4 2.1 0.4 1.7 -0.4 0.8 0.7 3.3

May

0.1 1.7 0.4 2.5 0.3 1.5 0.0 0.6 0.6 3.9

June

0.0 1.5 0.0 2.6 0.1 1.6 0.3 0.8

July

-0.2 1.3 0.0 2.7 0.1 1.7 0.4 1.1

August

0.3 1.6 0.2 2.7 0.1 1.5 0.1 1.1

September

0.5 1.9 0.1 2.2 0.0 1.4 0.1 1.2

October

-0.1 1.5 -0.1 2.3 -0.1 1.5 -0.2 1.1

November

0.0 1.6 -0.4 1.9 0.1 1.9 0.1 1.1

December

0.1 1.7 -0.1 1.7 -0.1 1.9 0.2 1.4

Geographic divisions

Additional price indexes are now available for the two divisions of the Northeast. Over the month, the all items CPI-U increased in the Middle Atlantic division, up 0.7 percent, and the New England division, up 0.3 percent.

Over the year, prices rose in the Middle Atlantic division, up 4.0 percent. The all items index also rose in the New England division (3.6 percent). (See table B.)

 Table B. CPI-U 1-month and 12-month percent changes, all items index, Northeast region and divisions, not seasonally adjusted
Area 1-month change 12-month change

Northeast

0.6 3.9

New England Division

0.3 3.6

Middle Atlantic Division

0.7 4.0

The Consumer Price Index for June 2021 is scheduled to be released Tuesday, July 13, 2021, at 8:30 a.m. (ET).

Coronavirus (COVID-19) Pandemic Impact on May 2021 Consumer Price Index Data

Data collection by personal visit for the Consumer Price Index (CPI) program has been suspended since March 16, 2020. When possible, data normally collected by personal visit were collected either online or by phone. Additionally, data collection in May was affected by the temporary closing or limited operations of certain types of establishments. These factors resulted in an increase in the number of prices considered temporarily unavailable and imputed.

While the CPI program attempted to collect as much data as possible, many indexes are based on smaller amounts of collected prices than usual, and a small number of indexes that are normally published were not published this month. Additional information is available at www.bls.gov/covid19/effects-of-covid-19-pandemic-on-consumer-price-index.htm.


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 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, 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 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; Federal Relay Service: (800) 877-8339.

Table 1. Consumer Price Index for All Urban Consumers (CPI-U): Indexes and percent changes for selected periods, Northeast Region, (1982-84=100 unless otherwise noted) (not seasonally adjusted)
Expenditure category Indexes Percent change from
Historical
data
Mar.
2021
Apr.
2021
May
2021
May
2020
Mar.
2021
Apr.
2021

All items

278.197 280.234 281.858 3.9 1.3 0.6

All items (December 1977 = 100)

438.075 441.283 443.840      

Food and beverages

276.783 278.408 279.003 1.3 0.8 0.2

Food

277.661 279.404 280.001 1.3 0.8 0.2

Food at home

260.243 262.195 263.165 -0.4 1.1 0.4

Cereals and bakery products

305.942 309.941 311.155 -0.5 1.7 0.4

Meats, poultry, fish, and eggs

267.033 271.443 274.365 -1.7 2.7 1.1

Dairy and related products

239.061 236.485 237.351 -1.9 -0.7 0.4

Fruits and vegetables

325.273 326.498 326.659 1.5 0.4 0.0

Nonalcoholic beverages and beverage materials

180.914 180.578 180.186 -0.6 -0.4 -0.2

Other food at home

230.228 232.722 233.182 0.4 1.3 0.2

Food away from home

307.319 308.751 308.774 3.6 0.5 0.0

Alcoholic beverages

264.273 264.290 264.840 1.9 0.2 0.2

Housing

297.291 298.589 299.508 2.8 0.7 0.3

Shelter

369.937 370.994 372.283 1.8 0.6 0.3

Rent of primary residence

373.351 373.814 374.233 1.3 0.2 0.1

Owners' equivalent rent of residences(1)

383.526 384.500 385.234 1.5 0.4 0.2

Owners' equivalent rent of primary residence(1)

383.196 384.169 384.901 1.5 0.4 0.2

Fuels and utilities

231.807 235.379 234.961 8.1 1.4 -0.2

Household energy

202.646 206.020 205.596 8.9 1.5 -0.2

Energy services

200.205 205.281 204.680 4.7 2.2 -0.3

Electricity

201.762 209.376 211.641 4.0 4.9 1.1

Utility (piped) gas service

182.207 182.056 176.024 6.4 -3.4 -3.3

Household furnishings and operations

125.826 126.519 127.112 5.9 1.0 0.5

Apparel

126.937 125.916 125.851 6.2 -0.9 -0.1

Transportation

210.476 216.319 223.359 17.1 6.1 3.3

Private transportation

207.196 212.347 217.664 17.6 5.1 2.5

New and used motor vehicles(2)

101.246 106.106 109.086 12.8 7.7 2.8

New vehicles

146.136 147.518 148.670 2.0 1.7 0.8

New cars and trucks(2)(3)

101.285 102.251 103.057 2.0 1.7 0.8

New cars(3)

137.174 138.243 139.018 2.9 1.3 0.6

Used cars and trucks

160.571 176.132 187.664 30.1 16.9 6.5

Motor fuel

242.183 242.832 254.310 44.6 5.0 4.7

Gasoline (all types)

241.208 241.857 253.372 45.0 5.0 4.8

Gasoline, unleaded regular(3)

238.438 238.981 250.753 46.6 5.2 4.9

Gasoline, unleaded midgrade(3)(4)

256.052 258.571 268.777 37.3 5.0 3.9

Gasoline, unleaded premium(3)

250.493 251.661 260.774 34.2 4.1 3.6

Motor vehicle insurance(5)

610.393 609.564 609.561 15.2 -0.1 0.0

Medical care

548.730 550.365 550.360 0.3 0.3 0.0

Medical care commodities

378.497 378.807 380.928 -2.5 0.6 0.6

Medical care services

598.682 600.724 600.049 0.9 0.2 -0.1

Professional services

415.405 418.685 419.865 4.1 1.1 0.3

Recreation(2)

128.684 129.835 129.162 -2.4 0.4 -0.5

Education and communication(2)

149.349 149.478 149.607 1.8 0.2 0.1

Tuition, other school fees, and child care(5)

1,311.727 1,311.727 1,314.677 1.0 0.2 0.2

Other goods and services

520.572 522.862 519.652 2.0 -0.2 -0.6

Commodity and service group

Commodities

197.254 199.229 201.362 7.0 2.1 1.1

Commodities less food and beverages

155.199 157.217 159.865 11.3 3.0 1.7

Nondurables less food and beverages

199.422 199.655 202.286 12.4 1.4 1.3

Durables

105.749 108.724 111.052 10.0 5.0 2.1

Services

355.873 357.972 359.111 2.3 0.9 0.3

Special aggregate indexes

All items less shelter

246.534 248.927 250.676 5.0 1.7 0.7

All items less medical care

266.273 268.330 270.029 4.2 1.4 0.6

Commodities less food

159.124 161.101 163.709 10.9 2.9 1.6

Nondurables

237.662 238.568 240.228 5.9 1.1 0.7

Nondurables less food

203.208 203.428 205.935 11.6 1.3 1.2

Services less rent of shelter(1)

352.858 356.127 357.112 2.8 1.2 0.3

Services less medical care services

339.144 341.246 342.511 2.5 1.0 0.4

Energy

218.736 221.008 225.404 22.7 3.0 2.0

All items less energy

287.157 289.199 290.591 2.8 1.2 0.5

All items less food and energy

290.670 292.778 294.320 3.0 1.3 0.5

Footnotes
(1) Indexes on a December 1982=100 base.
(2) Indexes on a December 1997=100 base.
(3) Special index based on a substantially smaller sample.
(4) Indexes on a December 1993=100 base.
(5) Indexes on a December 1977=100 base.

 

Last Modified Date: Thursday, June 10, 2021