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News Release Information

Wednesday, April 17, 2019


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Average Energy Prices, Detroit-Warren-Dearborn — March 2019

Gasoline prices averaged $2.576 per gallon in the Detroit-Warren-Dearborn area in March 2019, the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics reported today. Assistant Commissioner for Regional Operations Charlene Peiffer noted that area gasoline prices were comparable to last March when they averaged $2.573 per gallon. Detroit area households paid an average of 14.7 cents per kilowatt-hour (kWh) of electricity in March 2019, less than the 16.4 cents per kilowatt-hour in March 2018. In March, the average cost of utility (piped) gas was 84.4 cents per therm, higher than its average price of 75.7 cents per therm a year earlier. (Data in this release are not seasonally adjusted; accordingly, over-the-year-analysis is used throughout.)

At $2.576 per gallon in March 2019, costs for gasoline in the Detroit area were 4.4 cents lower than the national average of $2.620 per gallon. In March 2015 and 2018, Detroit area gasoline prices were lower than the national average by 12.5 cents and 5.8 cents, respectively. Detroit area gasoline prices in March 2016 were comparable to the national average, whereas in March 2017 local area prices were 7.5 cents higher than the national average. (See chart 1.)

The 14.7 cents per kWh that Detroit households paid for electricity in March 2019 was 8.9 percent higher than the nationwide average cost of 13.5 cents per kWh. In the previous four years (2015-2018) in March, Detroit area electricity costs exceeded the national average, ranging from 5.1 percent to 21.5 percent more. (See chart 2.)

Prices paid by Detroit area consumers for utility (piped) gas, commonly referred to as natural gas, were 84.4 cents per therm in March 2019, 19.5 percent below the national average of $1.048 per therm. In the previous four years (2015-2018) in March, Detroit area utility (piped) gas costs were lower than the national average, ranging from 12.7 percent to 28.2 percent less. (See chart 3.)

The Detroit-Warren-Dearborn, MI, core based statistical area covered in this release is comprised of Lapeer, Livingston, Macomb, Oakland, St. Clair, and Wayne Counties in Michigan.

Historical average energy prices for the U.S. and select metropolitan areas are available at www.bls.gov/regions/midwest/data/averageenergyprices_selectedareas_table.htm.

The Consumer Price Index for April 2019 is scheduled to be released Friday, May 10, 2019.

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, 9 divisions, 2 population size classes, 8 region/size-class cross-classifications, and the 23 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 Services: 800-877-8339.

Table 1. Average prices for gasoline, electricity, and utility (piped) gas, Detroit-Warren-Dearborn, MI, and the United States, March 2018 – March 2019, not seasonally adjusted
Year and monthGasoline per gallonElectricity per kWhUtility (piped) gas per therm
Detroit areaUnited StatesDetroit areaUnited StatesDetroit areaUnited States





























Note: Dash (–) indicates no data available.


Last Modified Date: Wednesday, April 17, 2019