The Zions Bank Wasatch Front Consumer Price Index (CPI) increased 0.9% from February to March on a non-seasonally adjusted basis. Year over year, the Wasatch Front Consumer Price Index has grown 4.3%, while the national Consumer Price Index has increased 1.9% since March of last year.
With the exception of utilities where prices remained flat, price increases were seen across every other sector in March. Transportation prices were the largest factor driving the overall increase in March, growing by 3.2% since February. Year over year, due largely to lower-than-average gas prices, transportation prices increased 0.1%.
Housing prices, which rose 0.5% in March, were the second-largest driver for the month-to-month price change. On an annual basis, for the eighth straight month housing prices were the largest driver of 12-month price growth. This growth appears to be slowing as annually housing prices increased 7.8%, the lowest 12-month price growth for the sector since September 2018.
Overall, prices along the Wasatch Front increased .9 percent from February to March, while national prices have increased 0.6 percent (non-seasonally adjusted) in the month of March.
ZIONS BANK CONSUMER PRICE INDEX SUMMARY
Food at home: Food at home prices increased 0.2 percent as prices for meat, poultry and produce increased slightly in March. Costs of food at home — including meats, fresh produce, wheat and dairy — account for 7.5 percent of a typical Utahn’s consumption.
Food away: Food away prices increased 1.1 percent as prices for full-service meals increased in March. Costs of food away — including full-service meals, fast food, and alcoholic beverages — account for 7.6 percent of a typical Utahn’s consumption.
Housing: Housing prices increased 0.5 percent in March as apartment rental rates increased. Costs of housing — including rental costs, home maintenance, and hotel rates — account for 38.9 percent of a typical Utahn’s consumption.
Utilities: Utility prices in Utah remained unchanged in March. Costs of utilities — including electricity, natural gas, water, and garbage — account for 4.1 percent of a typical Utahn’s consumption.
Clothing: Clothing prices increased 0.3 percent as men’s and women’s apparel prices increased in March. Costs of clothing — including women’s, men’s, and children’s apparel, and jewelry and watches — account for 4.6 percent of a typical Utahn’s consumption.
Transportation: Transportation prices increased 3.2 percent as car insurance rates, vehicle prices, and gas prices rose in March. Costs of transportation — including new and used vehicles, gasoline, and airfare — account for 16.2 percent of a typical Utahn’s consumption.
Medical care: Medical care prices increased 0.2 percent as prices for medical care services increased slightly in March. Costs of medical care — including prescription drugs, medical care services, and nursing home services — account for 6.4 percent of a typical Utahn’s consumption.
Recreation: Recreation prices increased 0.8 percent as prices for cable & satellite TV and video rentals increased slightly in March. Costs of recreation — including electronics, sporting goods, club fees, and pet products — account for 5.1 percent of a typical Utahn’s consumption.
Education and communication: Education and communication prices increased 0.3 percent as prices for elementary and high school education increased slightly in March. Costs of education and communication — including college tuition, personal computers, internet, and telephone — account for 6.7 percent of a typical Utahn’s consumption.
ZioOther goods and services: Prices for other goods and services increased 0.1 percent in the month of March as personal care product prices increased slightly. Costs of other goods and services — including tobacco products, cosmetics and personal care products — account for 2.9 percent of a typical Utahn’s consumption.