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SEATTLE AREA PRICES ROSE 1.7 PERCENT IN THE SECOND HALF OF 1992 -- 3.7 PERCENT ABOVE A YEAR AGO

 SAN FRANCISCO, Feb. 18 /PRNewswire/ -- Consumer prices in the Seattle area increased 1.7 percent in the second half of 1992, according to Sam Hirabayashi, the Regional Commissioner of the U.S. Department of Labor's Bureau of Labor Statistics. He said that prices for the area, which cover King, Pierce, and Snohomish counties, rose in six of the seven major expenditure categories, with the index for food and beverages remaining unchanged. Seattle area prices had increased 1.7 percent in the second half of 1991 and 1.9 percent in the first half of 1992. Consumer price index data for local areas are not seasonally adjusted.
 The area's semiannual All Items Consumer Price Index for All Urban Consumers reached 140.2 (1982-84 equals 100) in the second half of 1992, 3.7 percent above the level in the second half of 1991. This compares to increases of 4.5 percent for the year ending the second half of 1991, and 3.6 percent for the year ending the first half of 1992.
 Housing costs rose 1.4 percent in the second half of 1992 as the shelter component rose 1.6 percent, the cost of fuel and other utilities advanced 2.4 percent, and the index for household furnishings and operation declined 0.5 percent. The overall housing category rose 3.2 percent from the second half of 1991 to the second half of 1992.
 The local transportation index rose 4.5 percent over-the-year after rising 3.4 percent in the second half of 1992. Gasoline prices increased 8.1 percent in the second half of 1992 and this index was up 9.1 percent when compared year-ago levels. The public transportation component edged up 0.6 percent in the last six months and was down 0.3 percent when compared to the second half of 1991.
 The food and beverages category remained unchanged as a 1.5 percent decline in grocery prices offset increases of 1.1 percent in prices for alcoholic beverages and 1.4 percent in the cost of eating out (food away from home). Seattle-area prices for fruits and vegetables fell 5.9 percent in the second half of 1992 and were down 4.0 percent over-the-year. Also declining in the second half of 1992 were prices for dairy products, 2.8 percent, and miscellaneous grocery items, 0.9 percent. During the last six months, local prices for cereals and bakery products advanced 2.4 percent, and the meats, poultry, fish, and eggs component edged up 0.1 percent.
 The apparel and upkeep category increased 3.9 percent over-the-year after edging up 0.3 percent in the last half of 1992. The index for women's and girls' apparel rose 8.5 percent when compared to a year ago despite a 5.8 percent decline in price tags in the second half of 1992. Prices for men's and boys' apparel fell 2.4 percent in the latest six month-period while the cost of footwear rose 4.4 percent.
 The cost of medical care rose 3.3 percent in the second half of 1992 and was up 8.4 percent over-the-year. The local cost of entertainment rose 3.1 percent and this index was 4.2 percent above year-ago levels. The index for other goods and services increased 3.7 percent in the second half of 1992 despite a decline of 1.4 percent in the cost of personal care.
 Consumer Price Index for All Urban Consumers: Indexes for annual and semiannual averages and percent changes for selected periods (Data are not seasonally adjusted)
 Seattle-Tacoma, Wash. (1982-84 equals 100, unless otherwise noted)
 Percent change
 Semiannual to 2nd half
 average index 1992 from-
 1st 2nd 2nd 1st
 half half half half
 1992 1992 1991 1992
 Expenditure category
 All items 137.8 140.2 3.7 1.7
 All items (1967 equals 100) 420.0 427.3 - -
 Food and beverages 141.1 141.1 .6 .0
 Food 141.2 141.1 .7 -.1
 Food at home 137.8 135.7 -.6 -1.5
 Cereals and bakery products 150.4 154.0 2.3 2.4
 Meats, poultry, fish, and eggs 123.7 123.8 -.6 .1
 Meats, poultry, and fish 123.9 124.0 -.1 .1
 Dairy products 127.7 124.1 -1.7 -2.8
 Fruits and vegetables 172.6 162.4 -4.0 -5.9
 Other food at home 129.6 128.4 1.4 -.9
 Food away from home 147.6 149.6 1.5 1.4
 Alcoholic beverages 139.4 141.0 -.2 1.1
 Housing 138.3 140.2 3.2 1.4
 Shelter 152.9 155.3 3.4 1.6
 Renters' costs (A) 164.4 165.7 3.6 .8
 Rent, residential 148.7 150.2 2.5 1.0
 Other renters' costs 211.8 212.0 6.2 .1
 Homeowners' costs (A) 155.4 158.8 3.6 2.2
 Owners' equivalent rent (A) 155.2 158.7 3.6 2.3
 Fuel and other utilities 100.7 103.1 5.5 2.4
 Fuels 96.8 98.1 4.3 1.3
 Fuel oil and other household
 fuel commodities 85.2 89.4 4.3 4.9
 Fuel oil 84.6 88.8 4.2 5.0
 Other household fuel
 commodities (B) NA NA - -
 Gas (piped) and electricity 117.3 118.3 4.4 .9
 Electricity 129.5 130.9 4.6 1.1
 Utility (piped) gas 76.5 76.5 3.4 .0
 Household furnishings and operation 124.9 124.3 1.1 -.5
 Apparel and upkeep 118.5 118.9 3.9 .3
 Apparel commodities 116.5 116.5 3.9 .0
 Men's and boys' apparel 115.5 112.7 .1 -2.4
 Women's and girls' apparel 102.0 96.1 8.5 -5.8
 Footwear 115.0 120.1 -2.2 4.4
 Transportation 121.8 126.0 4.5 3.4
 Private transportation 124.8 129.4 4.9 3.7
 Motor fuel 96.2 103.9 9.0 8.0
 Gasoline 96.2 104.0 9.1 8.1
 Gasoline, leaded regular NA NA - -
 Gasoline, unleaded regular 94.2 101.7 9.4 8.0
 Gasoline, unleaded premium 100.5 106.6 7.0 6.1
 Public transportation 104.8 105.4 -.3 .6
 Medical care 181.2 187.1 8.4 3.3
 Entertainment 138.0 142.3 4.2 3.1
 Other goods and services 166.0 172.1 8.3 3.7
 Personal care 129.8 128.0 3.7 -1.4
 Special indexes
 All items less energy 142.6 144.7 3.4 1.5
 Energy 96.7 101.6 6.9 5.1
 (A) -- Indexes on a November 1982 equals 100 base.
 (B) -- Indexes on a December 1986 equals 100 base.
 NA -- Data not adequate for publication.
 -- Data not available.
 -0- 2/18/93 R
 /CONTACT: Leon Bornstein, 415-744-7163, or Joyce Sakai, 415-744-7132, both of the U.S. Department of Labor's Bureau of Labor Statistics/


CO: ST: Washington IN: SU: ECO

TS -- NY034 -- 7833 02/18/93 11:16 EST
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