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18-1641-SAN
Thursday, October 11, 2018

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Consumer Price Index, West Region — September 2018

Area prices were up 0.3 percent over the past month, up 3.4 percent from a year ago

Prices in the West Region, as measured by the Consumer Price Index for All Urban Consumers (CPI-U), increased 0.3 percent in September, the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics reported today. (See table A.) The September increase was influenced by higher prices for apparel and shelter. (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 advanced 3.4 percent. (See chart 1 and table A.) Energy prices rose 9.5 percent, largely the result of an increase in the price of gasoline. The index for all items less food and energy rose 3.2 percent over the year. (See table 1.)

Food

Food prices were unchanged for the month of September. (See table 1.) Prices for food at home edged down 0.2 percent, but prices for food away from home increased 0.3 percent for the same period.

Over the year, food prices rose 1.5 percent. Prices for food at home were virtually unchanged since a year ago, while prices for food away from home increased 3.3 percent.

Energy

The energy index declined 0.3 percent over the month. The decrease was mainly due to lower prices for electricity (-1.8 percent). Natural gas service declined 5.3 percent for the same period, but prices for gasoline advanced 1.1 percent.

Energy prices rose 9.5 percent over the year, largely due to higher prices for gasoline (15.6 percent). Prices paid for natural gas service advanced 0.7 percent, and prices for electricity rose 0.5 percent during the past year.

All items less food and energy

The index for all items less food and energy advanced 0.4 percent in September. Higher prices for apparel (3.8 percent), education and communication (0.7 percent), and shelter (0.3 percent) were partially offset by lower prices for used cars and trucks (-3.8 percent).

Over the year, the index for all items less food and energy rose 3.2 percent. Components contributing to the increase included shelter (4.5 percent) and medical care (2.7 percent). Partly offsetting the increase was a price decline in used cars and trucks (-1.4 percent).

Table A. West Region CPI-U monthly and annual percent changes (not seasonally adjusted)
Month 2013 2014 2015 2016 2017 2018
Monthly Annual Monthly Annual Monthly Annual Monthly Annual Monthly Annual Monthly Annual

January

0.3 1.7 0.3 1.7 -0.3 0.7 0.5 2.6 0.5 2.5 0.5 3.1

February

0.8 2.0 0.4 1.3 0.6 0.9 0.1 2.1 0.6 3.0 0.5 3.1

March

0.4 1.5 0.6 1.5 0.8 1.1 0.2 1.5 0.3 3.1 0.4 3.2

April

0.0 1.3 0.3 1.8 0.3 1.0 0.5 1.8 0.3 2.9 0.4 3.2

May

0.2 1.3 0.6 2.3 0.8 1.2 0.5 1.5 0.2 2.6 0.5 3.5

June

0.1 1.5 0.1 2.3 0.0 1.1 0.2 1.6 0.0 2.5 0.2 3.6

July

0.0 1.9 0.1 2.3 0.3 1.3 0.1 1.4 0.1 2.5 0.1 3.6

August

0.1 1.5 -0.1 2.1 -0.1 1.3 0.0 1.5 0.2 2.7 0.2 3.6

September

0.2 1.3 0.1 2.0 -0.2 1.0 0.3 2.0 0.5 2.9 0.3 3.4

October

-0.1 0.9 -0.1 2.0 0.0 1.1 0.3 2.3 0.3 2.9

November

-0.4 1.3 -0.6 1.7 -0.2 1.5 -0.2 2.3 0.0 3.1

December

0.0 1.8 -0.5 1.3 -0.1 1.8 0.0 2.5 0.1 3.1

The October 2018 Consumer Price Index for the West Region is scheduled to be released on November 14, 2018.


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 population and (2) a CPI for Urban Wage Earners and Clerical Workers (CPI-W) which covers 29 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 75 urban areas across the country from about 5,000 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 (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 West Region covered in this release is comprised of the following thirteen states: Alaska, Arizona, California, Colorado, Hawaii, Idaho, Montana, Nevada, New Mexico, Oregon, Utah, Washington, and Wyoming.

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. Consumer Price Index for All Urban Consumers (CPI-U): Indexes and percent changes for selected periods

West (1982-84=100 unless otherwise noted)
Item and Group

Indexes Percent change from-
Jul.
2018
Aug.
2018
Sep.
2018
Sep.
2017
Jul.
2018
Aug.
2018

Expenditure category

All Items

263.971 264.395 265.105 3.4 0.4 0.3

All items (December 1977=100)

426.695 427.380 428.528      

Food and beverages

259.346 260.098 260.238 1.6 0.3 0.1

Food

258.957 259.839 259.955 1.5 0.4 0.0

Food at home

246.043 246.873 246.457 -0.1 0.2 -0.2

Cereals and bakery products

257.604 259.020 258.351   0.3 -0.3

Meats, poultry, fish, and eggs

254.621 258.828 255.646   0.4 -1.2

Dairy and related products

225.280 225.159 225.997   0.3 0.4

Fruits and vegetables

328.882 325.125 328.324   -0.2 1.0

Nonalcoholic beverages and beverage materials

169.007 171.246 171.372   1.4 0.1

Other food at home

211.847 211.715 210.942   -0.4 -0.4

Food away from home

275.768 276.720 277.520 3.3 0.6 0.3

Alcoholic beverages

261.082 260.135 260.600 3.0 -0.2 0.2

Housing

287.898 288.932 289.398 3.9 0.5 0.2

Shelter

331.639 332.959 333.957 4.5 0.7 0.3

Rent of primary residence(1)

349.575 351.431 353.140 4.9 1.0 0.5

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

347.643 349.126 350.400 4.3 0.8 0.4

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

347.658 349.141 350.417 4.3 0.8 0.4

Fuels and utilities

303.862 306.943 301.933 1.7 -0.6 -1.6

Household energy

260.716 263.985 257.487 0.6 -1.2 -2.5

Energy services(1)

263.022 266.349 259.548 0.5 -1.3 -2.6

Electricity(1)

293.988 294.006 288.745 0.5 -1.8 -1.8

Utility (piped) gas service(1)

205.731 218.282 206.671 0.7 0.5 -5.3

Household furnishings and operations

129.110 128.378 129.206 1.2 0.1 0.6

Apparel

116.023 116.614 120.996 0.3 4.3 3.8

Transportation

220.363 219.235 219.326 6.1 -0.5 0.0

Private transportation

215.824 215.011 214.985 6.5 -0.4 0.0

New and used motor vehicles(3)

100.701 100.683 99.368 0.0 -1.3 -1.3

New vehicles

147.075 145.903 145.885 -0.1 -0.8 0.0

New cars and trucks(3)(4)

102.160 101.334 101.315 -0.1 -0.8 0.0

New cars(4)

144.240 143.377 143.667 0.9 -0.4 0.2

Used cars and trucks

134.821 135.579 130.452 -1.4 -3.2 -3.8

Motor fuel

274.374 271.188 273.994 15.7 -0.1 1.0

Gasoline (all types)

273.199 269.963 272.802 15.6 -0.1 1.1

Gasoline, unleaded regular(4)

270.477 267.197 270.063 15.8 -0.2 1.1

Gasoline, unleaded midgrade(4)(5)

259.895 257.208 259.277 15.7 -0.2 0.8

Gasoline, unleaded premium(4)

266.183 263.377 265.956 14.9 -0.1 1.0

Motor vehicle insurance(6)

843.244 841.012 847.893   0.6 0.8

Medical Care

496.037 494.151 495.094 2.7 -0.2 0.2

Medical care commodities

384.693 385.085 382.609 2.3 -0.5 -0.6

Medical care services

531.008 528.357 530.461 2.8 -0.1 0.4

Professional services

357.697 354.203 354.466 0.4 -0.9 0.1

Recreation(3)

113.911 114.002 113.933 1.0 0.0 -0.1

Education and communication(3)

136.063 137.172 138.175 1.5 1.6 0.7

Tuition, other school fees, and child care(6)

1,399.067 1,433.387 1,457.206   4.2 1.7

Other goods and services

436.007 436.312 437.335 2.7 0.3 0.2

Commodity and Service Group

All Items

263.971 264.395 265.105 3.4 0.4 0.3

Commodities

185.376 185.265 185.784 2.2 0.2 0.3

Commodities less food & beverages

148.319 147.891 148.525 2.6 0.1 0.4

Nondurables less food & beverages

196.321 195.806 198.314 5.6 1.0 1.3

Nondurables less food, beverages, and apparel

252.628 251.316 252.441 7.4 -0.1 0.4

Durables

105.466 105.123 104.306 -1.4 -1.1 -0.8

Services

336.793 337.754 338.639 4.0 0.5 0.3

Rent of shelter(2)

353.072 354.490 355.560 4.5 0.7 0.3

Transportation services

319.043 318.229 320.048 6.2 0.3 0.6

Other services

350.245 352.039 353.861 2.7 1.0 0.5

Special aggregate indexes:

All items less medical care

253.359 253.881 254.579 3.4 0.5 0.3

All items less food

264.929 265.282 266.086 3.6 0.4 0.3

All items less shelter

237.493 237.558 238.155 2.7 0.3 0.3

Commodities less food

152.516 152.071 152.706 2.6 0.1 0.4

Nondurables

228.310 228.376 229.819 3.4 0.7 0.6

Nondurables less food

201.237 200.694 203.099 5.4 0.9 1.2

Nondurables less food and apparel

253.126 251.851 252.912 6.9 -0.1 0.4

Services less rent of shelter(2)

353.751 354.242 354.992 3.4 0.4 0.2

Services less medical care services

323.213 324.408 325.212 4.1 0.6 0.2

Energy

273.095 272.425 271.577 9.5 -0.6 -0.3

All items less energy

265.503 266.010 266.840 2.9 0.5 0.3

All items less food and energy

267.428 267.873 268.827 3.2 0.5 0.4

Commodities less food and energy commodities

139.098 138.970 139.347 -0.1 0.2 0.3

Energy commodities

278.990 275.826 278.696 15.5 -0.1 1.0

Services less energy services

342.395 343.230 344.541 4.2 0.6 0.4

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

- Data not available
Regions defined as the four Census regions. West includes Alaska, Arizona, California, Colorado, Hawaii, Idaho, Montana, Nevada, New Mexico, Oregon, Utah, Washington, and Wyoming.
NOTE: Index applies to a month as a whole, not to any specific date. Data not seasonally adjusted.

 

Last Modified Date: Thursday, October 11, 2018