November 2011 Municipal Cost Index increases slightly
Last month, the overall costs of goods and services purchased by local governments increased 0.3 percent, according to American City & County’s Municipal Cost Index. The November 2011 Municipal Cost Index value of 224.2 is 4.9 percent higher than last year.
Most items tracked by American City & County showed only slight price changes in the last month. However, after dipping in September, crude petroleum and diesel fuel (No. 2) prices rebounded in October. Crude petroleum increased 23 percent and diesel fuel (No. 2) increased 7.3 percent last month. Meanwhile, natural gas prices decreased 8.6 percent last month.
Fuel prices still show the greatest price increases over last year among the items tracked by American City & County. Diesel fuel is up 39.4 percent, gasoline is up 39.2 percent, and home heating oil and distillates are up 39 percent over the last year. Natural gas is up 7.1 percent over last year. Electronic computer prices have decreased 12.2 percent since last year, which is the greatest decrease of all items tracked by American City & County.
The Municipal Cost Index, developed exclusively by American City & County, is designed to show the effects of inflation on the cost of providing municipal services. State and local government officials rely on American City & County’s Municipal Cost Index to stay on top of price trends, help control price increases for commodities, make informed government contract decisions and intelligent budget planning. Since 1978, readers have loyally referred to the Municipal Cost Index to determine the cost of inflation and, hence, the rising cost of doing business as a local government.
American City & County’s Municipal Cost Index for November 2011 is available now at www.americancityandcounty.com/mciarchive. For a complete archive of the index since 1978, visit www.americancityandcounty.com/mciarchive.