The Consumer Price Index for All Urban Consumers (CPI-U) was unchanged in April on a seasonally adjusted basis, the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics reported today. Over the last 12 months, the all items index increased 2.3% before seasonal adjustment.
US Inflation: February – April 2012 Consumer Prices
|Food at home||.0||0.1||0.2||3.3|
|Food away from home||0.1||0.2||0.3||2.9|
|Gasoline (all types)||6.0||1.7||-2.6||3.2|
|Utility (piped) gas service||-3.4||0.9||-1.8||-11.6|
|All items less food, energy||0.1||0.2||0.2||2.3|
|Comm. less food, energy||0.1||0.2||0.2||2.0|
|Used cars and trucks||-0.2||1.3||1.5||3.5|
|Services less energy||0.1||0.2||0.3||2.4|
The energy index, which had risen in each of the three previous months, declined in April on a seasonally adjusted basis and offset increases in the other major indexes. The gasoline index fell 2.6% in April and accounted for most of the decline in energy, though the indexes for natural gas and fuel oil decreased as well. The food index rose in April as five of the six major grocery store food group indexes increased.
The index for all items less food and energy rose 0.2% in April, the same increase as in March. Increases in the indexes for shelter, used cars and trucks, medical care, airline fares, new vehicles, and apparel all contributed significantly to the April increase.
The 12-month change in the index for all items was 2.3% in April, the lowest figure since February 2011. The index for all items less food and energy also increased 2.3% over the last 12 months. This is the first time since October 2009 that the 12-month all items change has not exceeded the 12-month change for all items less food and energy. The food index has risen 3.1% over the last 12 months, and the energy index has risen 0.9%.
The food index rose 0.2% in April, the same increase as in March. The index for food at home, up 0.1% in March, increased 0.2% in April. Five of the six major grocery store food group indexes rose in April. The index for fruits and vegetables posted the largest increase, rising 1.0% in April after a series of declines. The index for cereals and bakery products rose 0.4% in April after declining in March. The index for nonalcoholic beverages rose 0.2%, and the indexes for meats, poultry, fish, and eggs and for other food at home both rose 0.1%. In contrast, the index for dairy and related products fell 1.0% in April, its third consecutive decline. Over the last 12 months, the food at home index has increased 3.3%. Five of the six food groups have risen over that time; despite the April increase the fruits and vegetables group is the only one to decline over the last 12 months, falling 1.7%. The index for food away from home rose 0.3% in April and has increased 2.9% over the last 12 months.
The energy index, which rose 0.9% in March, declined 1.7% in April. The gasoline index fell 2.6% in April after rising sharply over the first three months of the year. (Before seasonal adjustment, gasoline prices increased 1.8% in April.) The fuel oil index also declined in April, falling 1.1%. The energy services index declined slightly in April, falling 0.2%. The index for electricity rose 0.2% after falling in March, but the index for natural gas declined 1.8%, its sixth decline in seven months. Over the last 12 months, the gasoline index has risen 3.2%, the fuel oil index has increased 0.9% and the index for electricity has advanced 0.6%. In contrast, the index for natural gas has declined 11.6%.
All items less food and energy
The index for all items less food and energy increased 0.2% in April after a 0.1% increase in February and a 0.2% increase in March. The index for shelter increased 0.2% for the seventh month in a row, with rent and owners’ equivalent rent both rising 0.2%. The index for medical care increased 0.3%, with the index for hospital services rising 0.6%. The index for used cars and trucks increased sharply for the second straight month, rising 1.5% in April after a 1.3% increase in March. The index for airline fares also rose significantly in April, advancing 2.1%. The new vehicles index rose 0.4%, as did the index for apparel. The indexes for tobacco, alcoholic beverages, and personal care each increased slightly. The index for household furnishings and operations was unchanged in April, while the index for recreation fell 0.1% as the indexes for video and audio products and for toys both declined notably.
The index for all items less food and energy has risen 2.3% over the last 12 months, the same figure as last month and the sixth month in a row it has been either 2.2 or 2.3%. The index for shelter has risen 2.2% over the period, as has the index for new vehicles. The apparel index has risen 5.1%, the largest 12- month increase since January 1991, while the index for medical care has risen 3.4%.
Not seasonally adjusted CPI measures
The Consumer Price Index for All Urban Consumers (CPI-U) increased 2.3% over the last 12 months to an index level of 230.085 (1982-84=100). For the month, the index increased 0.3% prior to seasonal adjustment.
The Consumer Price Index for Urban Wage Earners and Clerical Workers (CPI-W) increased 2.4% over the last 12 months to an index level of 227.012 (1982-84=100). For the month, the index increased 0.3% prior to seasonal adjustment.
The Chained Consumer Price Index for All Urban Consumers (C-CPI-U) increased 2.1% over the last 12 months. For the month, the index increased 0.3% on a not seasonally adjusted basis. Please note that the indexes for the post-2010 period are subject to revision.
The Consumer Price Index for May 2012 is scheduled to be released on Thursday, June 14, 2012, at 8:30 a.m. (EDT).