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19-1601-CHI
Monday, September 30, 2019

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Average Energy Prices, Chicago-Naperville-Elgin — August 2019

Gasoline prices averaged $2.863 per gallon in the Chicago-Naperville-Elgin area in August 2019, the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics reported today. Assistant Commissioner for Regional Operations Charlene Peiffer noted that area gasoline prices were down 10.8 cents compared to August 2018 when they averaged $2.971 per gallon. Chicago area households paid an average of 16.4 cents per kilowatt-hour (kWh) of electricity in August 2019, compared to 16.0 cents in August 2018. In August, the average cost of utility (piped) gas was 79.2 cents per therm, less than its average price of 85.6 cents per therm a year earlier. (Data in this release are not seasonally adjusted; accordingly, over-the-year-analysis is used throughout.)

The $2.863 per gallon Chicago households paid for gasoline in August 2019 was 14.7 cents more than the nationwide average of $2.716. In each of the prior four years (2015-2018) in August, Chicago area gasoline prices were greater than the national average, ranging from 5.2 cents to 37 cents more. (See chart 1.)

The 16.4 cents per kWh that Chicago households paid for electricity in August 2019 was 18.0 percent more than the nationwide average cost of 13.9 cents per kWh. In each of the prior four years (2015-2018) in August, electricity costs in Chicago were higher than the national average, ranging from 8.6 percent to 15.1 percent less. (See chart 2.)

Prices paid by Chicago area consumers for utility (piped) gas, commonly referred to as natural gas, were 79.2 cents per therm in August 2019, 23.4 percent less than the national average of $1.034 per therm. In each of the previous four years (2015-2018) in August, Chicago area utility (piped) gas costs were lower than the national average, ranging from 13.8 percent to 18.9 percent less. (See chart 3.)

The Chicago-Naperville-Elgin, IL-IN-WI, core based statistical area consists of Cook, DeKalb, DuPage, Grundy, Kane, Kendall, Lake, McHenry, and Will Counties in Illinois; Jasper, Lake, Newton, and Porter Counties in Indiana; and Kenosha County in Wisconsin.

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 September 2019 is scheduled to be released on Thursday, October 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 in this release will be made available to sensory impaired individuals upon request. Voice phone: (202) 691-5200; Federal Relay Service: (800) 877-8339.

Table 1. Average prices for gasoline, electricity, and utility (piped) gas, Chicago-Naperville-Elgin, IL-IN-WI and the United States, August 2018 – August 2019, not seasonally adjusted
Year and month Gasoline per gallon Electricity per kWh Utility (piped) gas per therm
Chicago area United States Chicago area United States Chicago area United States

2018

August

$2.971 $2.919 $0.160 $0.139 $0.856 $1.055

September

2.990 2.930 0.157 0.138 0.853 1.030

October

2.904 2.945 0.156 0.136 0.818 1.023

November

2.541 2.733 0.156 0.134 0.828 1.020

December

2.309 2.479 0.156 0.135 0.876 1.085

2019

January

2.216 2.352 0.161 0.135 0.852 1.082

February

2.411 2.412 0.161 0.136 0.816 1.051

March

2.761 2.620 0.161 0.135 0.772 1.048

April

3.066 2.894 0.165 0.135 0.760 1.034

May

3.166 2.963 0.161 0.136 0.778 1.035

June

2.994 2.814 0.161 0.139 0.812 1.035

July

3.095 2.836 0.157 0.140 0.799 1.029

August

2.863 2.716 0.164 0.139 0.792 1.034

 

Last Modified Date: Monday, September 30, 2019