On October 30, the feds released the Gross Domestic Product numbers for the third quarter. In the quarter ending September, consumers’ electric bills as a percentage of all consumer expenditures was one and three tenths of a percent.
That was the lowest percentage for a third quarter since at least the nineteen-fifties. As recently as 2010, the third quarter’s electric bill percentage was nearly as high as one and two-thirds of a percent.
In the third quarter of the year 2000, twenty years ago, consumers’ electric bills were 98.7 billion dollars annualized. In this year’s third quarter, electric bills rose to 190.9 billion dollars annualized, an increase to about 1.9 times the year 2000 level.
However, in the third quarter of the year 2000, all consumer expenditures were 6.8 trillion dollars, annualized. In this year’s third quarter, all consumer expenditures rose to 14.7 trillion dollars, annualized, an increase to about 2.2 times the year 2000 level.
Because electric bills increased to about 1.9 times over the twenty years, and all consumer expenditures increased to about 2.2 times during the same period, electric service is effectively less expensive now than it was in the late summer of the year 2000.