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HIGHER PRICED PRODUCE CAUSE GROCERY PRICES TO RISE; ENERGY INDEX UP SLIGHTLY DUE TO MORE EXPENSIVE MOTOR FUEL

 HIGHER PRICED PRODUCE CAUSE GROCERY PRICES TO RISE;
 ENERGY INDEX UP SLIGHTLY DUE TO MORE EXPENSIVE MOTOR FUEL
 PITTSBURGH, Aug. 13 /PRNewswire/ -- Grocery prices in the Pittsburgh-Beaver Valley area, as measured by the Consumer Price Index for All Urban Consumers (CPI-U), fell 0.3 percent in July, following a 0.4 percent increase the previous month, the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics reported today.
 Alan M. Paisner, the bureau's regional commissioner, noted that the slight fall in grocery prices was caused by a 3.4 percent drop in fruit and vegetable prices from June 1992. Since July 1991, the food at home index for Allegheny, Beaver, Fayette, Washington, and Westmoreland Counties rose 3.2 percent (see table).
 Dairy products followed in the monthly decline, dropping 0.2 percent from June, but were still 5.9 percent higher than last July. The other food at home category -- which includes sugars and sweets, fats and oils, nonalcoholic beverages, and other prepared food like soup, snacks, and baby food -- fell 0.6 percent over the month and was just 2.0 percent higher over the year.
 The effect of the sizable over-the-month decline in produce prices, which resulted in fruit and vegetable prices that were 3.2 percent lower than a year ago, was offset by increases in two of the other major food components. Prices for bread and cereal increased 1.7 percent from June, while meat, poultry, fish and eggs increased 0.7 percent. Both were higher over the year, up 3.4 and 7.4 percent respectively.
 The Pittsburgh-Beaver Valley food at home index stood at 130.5 on the 1982-84 base, which means that grocery shoppers in the Pittsburgh- Beaver Valley area would have had to spend $13.05 last month for a market basket of food items that cost $10 in 1982-84.
 Energy costs for the Pittsburgh area increased 0.2 percent from June, and 1.2 percent from July 1991. Much of the increase was due to a 0.4 percent increase in motor fuel prices since June. The motor fuel index increased 2.6 percent over the year.
 CONSUMER PRICE INDEX FOR ALL URBAN CONSUMERS:
 PITTSBURGH-BEAVER VALLEY AREA, NOT SEASONALLY ADJUSTED
 (1982-84 equals 100, unless otherwise noted)
 Index Percent
 GROUP July change to July
 1992 1992 from
 June July
 1992 1991
 Food at home 130.5 -0.3 3.2
 Cereals and bakery products 141.7 1.7 3.4
 Meats, poultry, fish, and eggs 128.1 0.7 7.4
 Meats, poultry and fish 130.8 0.8 8.4
 Dairy products 121.9 -0.2 5.9
 Fruits and vegetables 140.5 -3.4 -3.2
 Other foods at home 124.7 -0.6 2.0
 Energy 114.5 0.2 1.2
 Fuels 125.2 -0.1 0.2
 Fuel oil 84.7 -1.1 9.7
 Gas (piped) and electricity 126.9 0.0 -0.2
 Electricity 143.5 0.0 0.6
 Utility (piped) gas 113.7 0.0 -1.0
 Motor fuel 99.5 0.4 2.6
 Gasoline 99.4 0.4 2.5
 Gasoline, unleaded regular 97.1 0.6 2.8
 Gasoline, unleaded premium 101.2 0.4 3.4
 -0- 8/13/92
 /CONTACT: Michelle Weihmann (information), 215-596-1154, or Maureen Greene (media), 215-596-1157, both of the U.S. Department of Labor, Bureau of Labor Statistics/ CO: U.S. Department of Labor, Bureau of Labor Statistics ST: Maryland IN: HOU SU: ECO


LJ -- PG002 -- 9509 08/13/92 09:51 EDT
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Date:Aug 13, 1992
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