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The cost of consumer goods and services as measured by the Consumer Price Index for All Urban Consumers (CPI-U) rose 1.8 percent nationwide from October ’18 to October ’19, according to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics. Core inflation (all items less the volatile food and energy categories) increased 2.3 percent since October ’18. 
The cost of energy decreased 4.2 percent from the previous October. Motor fuel prices fell 7.4 percent. Natural gas prices increased 0.2 percent while electricity costs increased 0.4 percent. The shelter index rose 3.3 percent from October ’18. Food prices went up 2.1 percent, with the cost of dining out increasing 3.3 percent and grocery prices increasing marginally by 1.0 percent.
Consumer prices in the Houston-The Woodlands-Sugar Land metro area increased 0.9 percent from October ’18 to October ’19. Core inflation, all items less food and energy, advanced 2.0 percent. The greatest contributor to the 12-month change was a 2.3 percent rise in the cost of shelter.
In the 12 months ending October ’19, the energy index fell 10.0 percent. Motor fuel costs decreased 13.1 percent. Electricity costs decreased 8.1 percent while natural gas prices rose 10.1 percent.
Food prices rose 1.6 percent during the previous 12 months. The cost of dining out grew 2.5 percent while grocery prices increased 0.6 percent.
 CPI data in this commentary are not seasonally adjusted.
 Austin, Brazoria, Chambers, Fort Bend, Galveston, Harris, Liberty, Montgomery and Waller Counties.
Elizabeth Balderrama, PCED
Patrick Jankowski, CERP
Senior Vice President, Research
Houston's energy index fell 10.0% since last October