Philadelphia-area consumers saw higher prices for electricity, rent and food in January, the government said yesterday. But gasoline prices were moderating.
The Bureau of Labor Statistics said food costs in the Philadelphia region rose 1.7 percent in January from December because of higher prices for chicken, bread, sodas, citrus fruits and fresh vegetables.
The government agency said a basket of food that cost $10 in 1984 would have cost $20.17 in January.
Rents for homes and apartments rose 5.4 percent in the Philadelphia area since January 2006. Electricity prices jumped 11 percent.
Sheila Watkins, the bureau's regional commissioner in Philadelphia, said electricity prices jumped at a rate about three times faster in the Philadelphia region than they did in the nation since January 2006.
Watkins said food prices rose at a slower rate in the region over that time than they did in the nation. But the region's housing costs - which are basically rents - rose faster on average than they did in the nation.