News Release Information

15-1009-SAN
Friday, May 22, 2015

Contacts

Technical information:
Media contact:
  • (415) 625-2270

Consumer Price Index, Los Angeles area — April 2015

Area prices were down 0.1 percent over the past month, up 0.5 percent from a year ago

Prices in the Los Angeles area, as measured by the Consumer Price Index for All Urban Consumers (CPI-U), inched down 0.1 percent in April, the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics reported today. (See table A.) Regional Commissioner Richard J. Holden noted that the April decrease was influenced by lower prices for gasoline and apparel. (Data in this report are not seasonally adjusted. Accordingly, month-to-month changes may reflect seasonal influences.)

Over the last 12 months, the CPI-U increased 0.5 percent.  (See chart 1 and table A.) Energy prices dropped 13.1 percent, largely the result of a decrease in the price of gasoline. The index for all items less food and energy increased 1.5 percent over the year. (See table 1.)

 Chart 1. Over-the-year percent change in CPI-U, Los Angeles, April 2012-April 2015

Food

Food prices advanced 0.3 percent for the month of April. (See table 1.) Prices for food at home advanced 0.4 percent, and during the same period prices for food away from home were virtually unchanged (0.1 percent).

Over the year, food prices increased 2.5 percent. Prices for food away from home advanced 3.0 percent since a year ago, and prices for food at home rose 2.1 percent.

Energy

The energy index declined 2.4 percent over the month. The decrease was mainly due to lower prices for gasoline (-3.6 percent). Prices for natural gas service decreased 3.1 percent, but prices for electricity rose 0.8 percent in the same period.

Energy prices dropped 13.1 percent over the year, largely due to lower prices for gasoline (-24.1 percent). Prices paid for natural gas service decreased 7.2 percent, but prices for electricity jumped 21.9 percent during the past year.

All items less food and energy

The index for all items less food and energy inched up 0.1 percent in April. Higher prices for education and communication (0.7 percent), medical care (0.3 percent), and shelter (0.1 percent) were partially offset by lower prices for apparel (-2.3 percent) and household furnishings and operations (-1.1 percent).

Over the year, the index for all items less food and energy increased 1.5 percent. Components contributing to the increase included shelter (3.5 percent) and medical care (3.1 percent). Partly offsetting the increases were price declines in apparel (-7.7 percent) and recreation (-2.8 percent).

Table A. Los Angeles-Riverside-Orange County CPI-U monthly and annual percent changes (not seasonally adjusted)
Month 2010 2011 2012 2013 2014 2015
Monthly Annual Monthly Annual Monthly Annual Monthly Annual Monthly Annual Monthly Annual

January

0.4 1.8 0.9 1.8 0.8 2.1 0.8 2.0 0.5 0.8 -0.3 -0.1

February

0.0 1.4 0.5 2.3 0.5 2.1 0.7 2.2 0.5 0.5 0.7 0.1

March

0.4 1.9 1.1 3.0 1.0 2.0 0.1 1.3 0.6 1.0 1.0 0.5

April

0.2 1.9 0.5 3.3 0.0 1.5 -0.4 0.9 0.0 1.4 -0.1 0.5

May

0.2 1.8 0.0 3.1 0.1 1.6 0.1 1.0 0.4 1.7    

June

-0.2 0.9 -0.4 2.9 -0.4 1.6 -0.1 1.4 0.1 1.8    

July

0.1 0.9 -0.4 2.4 -0.1 1.9 -0.1 1.3 0.1 2.0    

August

0.2 0.8 0.2 2.4 0.6 2.3 0.1 0.8 -0.1 1.8    

September

-0.1 0.4 0.5 3.1 0.4 2.2 0.2 0.6 0.0 1.7    

October

0.3 0.7 0.0 2.8 0.8 3.0 0.1 -0.1 -0.1 1.4    

November

-0.4 0.7 -0.1 3.0 -1.0 2.1 -0.5 0.4 -0.7 1.3    

December

0.3 1.3 -0.5 2.2 -0.7 1.9 0.0 1.1 -0.5 0.7    

The May 2015 Consumer Price Index for the Los Angeles-Riverside-Orange County is scheduled to be released on June 18, 2015.


Technical Note

The Consumer Price Index (CPI) is a measure of the average change in prices over time in a fixed market basket of goods and services. The Bureau of Labor Statistics publishes CPIs for two population groups: (1) a CPI for All Urban Consumers (CPI-U) which covers approximately 89 percent of the total population and (2) a CPI for Urban Wage Earners and Clerical Workers (CPI-W) which covers 28 percent of the total population. The CPI-U includes, in addition to wage earners and clerical workers, groups such as professional, managerial, and technical workers, the self-employed, short-term workers, the unemployed, and retirees and others not in the labor force.

The CPI is based on prices of food, clothing, shelter, and fuels, transportation fares, charges for doctors' and dentists' services, drugs, and the other goods and services that people buy for day-to-day living. Each month, prices are collected in 87 urban areas across the country from about 4,000 housing units and approximately 26,000 retail establishments--department stores, supermarkets, hospitals, filling stations, and other types of stores and service establishments. All taxes directly associated with the purchase and use of items are included in the index.

The index measures price changes from a designated reference date (1982-84) that equals 100.0. An increase of 16.5 percent, for example, is shown as 116.5. This change can also be expressed in dollars as follows: the price of a base period "market basket" of goods and services in the CPI has risen from $10 in 1982-84 to $11.65. For further details see the CPI home page on the Internet at www.bls.gov/cpi and the BLS Handbook of Methods, Chapter 17, The Consumer Price Index, available on the Internet at www.bls.gov/opub/hom/homch17_a.htm.

In calculating the index, price changes for the various items in each location are averaged together with weights that represent their importance in the spending of the appropriate population group. Local data are then combined to obtain a U.S. city average. Because the sample size of a local area is smaller, the local area index is subject to substantially more sampling and other measurement error than the national index. In addition, local indexes are not adjusted for seasonal influences. As a result, local area indexes show greater volatility than the national index, although their long-term trends are quite similar. NOTE: Area indexes do not measure differences in the level of prices between cities; they only measure the average change in prices for each area since the base period.

The Los Angeles-Riverside-Orange County, CA. metropolitan area covered in this release is comprised of Los Angeles, Orange, Riverside, San Bernardino, and Ventura Counties in the State of California.

Information in this release will be made available to sensory impaired individuals upon request. Voice phone: (202) 691-5200; Federal Relay Service: (800) 877-8339.

Table 1. Consumer Price Index for All Urban Consumers (CPI-U): Indexes and percent changes for selected periods

Los Angeles-Riverside-Orange County, CA (1982-84=100 unless otherwise noted)
Item and Group

 
Indexes
 
Percent change from-
Feb.
2015
Mar.
2015
Apr.
2015
Apr.
2014
Feb.
2015
Mar.
2015

Expenditure category

 
 

All items

241.297 243.738 243.569 0.5 0.9 -0.1

All items (1967=100)

712.900 720.111 719.611 - - -

Food and beverages

248.892 248.363 249.003 2.5 0.0 0.3

Food

249.082 248.534 249.248 2.5 0.1 0.3

Food at home

259.032 257.960 258.979 2.1 0.0 0.4

Food away from home

232.938 233.064 233.381 3.0 0.2 0.1

Alcoholic beverages

231.635 231.359 231.071 2.7 -0.2 -0.1

Housing

264.550 265.421 265.396 3.6 0.3 0.0

Shelter

298.537 299.897 300.314 3.5 0.6 0.1

Rent of primary residence (1)

312.124 313.508 313.992 3.9 0.6 0.2

Owners' equiv. rent of residences (1) (2)

310.325 311.722 312.205 3.3 0.6 0.2

Owners' equiv. rent of primary residence (1) (2)

310.319 311.712 312.195 3.3 0.6 0.2

Fuels and utilities

296.282 295.360 294.684 10.0 -0.5 -0.2

Household energy

262.995 261.682 260.958 12.2 -0.8 -0.3

Energy services (1)

261.782 260.382 259.737 12.6 -0.8 -0.2

Electricity (1)

305.940 304.112 306.635 21.9 0.2 0.8

Utility (piped) gas service (1)

206.883 206.125 199.661 -7.2 -3.5 -3.1

Household furnishings and operations

117.341 117.203 115.963 -1.4 -1.2 -1.1

Apparel

109.115 110.898 108.358 -7.7 -0.7 -2.3

Transportation

191.014 201.691 200.506 -8.4 5.0 -0.6

Private transportation

185.603 196.427 194.605 -8.5 4.9 -0.9

Motor fuel

219.228 258.782 249.347 -24.1 13.7 -3.6

Gasoline (all types)

214.426 253.274 244.038 -24.1 13.8 -3.6

Gasoline, unleaded regular (3)

215.041 254.262 245.001 -24.3 13.9 -3.6

Gasoline, unleaded midgrade (3) (4)

203.866 241.234 232.593 -23.2 14.1 -3.6

Gasoline, unleaded premium (3)

204.587 239.499 231.098 -23.2 13.0 -3.5

Medical care

418.580 421.601 422.773 3.1 1.0 0.3

Recreation (5)

102.833 102.860 102.830 -2.8 0.0 0.0

Education and communication (5)

145.243 145.710 146.701 0.8 1.0 0.7

Other goods and services

382.310 381.647 381.737 0.5 -0.1 0.0
 

Commodity and service group

 
 

All items

241.297 243.738 243.569 0.5 0.9 -0.1

Commodities

174.376 177.798 176.703 -3.5 1.3 -0.6

Commodities less food & beverages

135.194 140.160 138.369 -7.7 2.3 -1.3

Nondurables less food & beverages

173.694 183.253 179.607 -11.0 3.4 -2.0

Durables

97.456 98.057 98.026 -1.4 0.6 0.0

Services

300.456 301.870 302.614 2.9 0.7 0.2
 

Special aggregate indexes

 
 

All items less medical care

233.401 235.802 235.590 0.3 0.9 -0.1

All items less shelter

216.374 219.281 218.858 -1.3 1.1 -0.2

Commodities less food

139.383 144.221 142.464 -7.2 2.2 -1.2

Nondurables

212.127 217.046 215.378 -4.0 1.5 -0.8

Nondurables less food

179.152 188.180 184.711 -10.0 3.1 -1.8

Services less rent of shelter (2)

311.748 313.264 314.505 2.1 0.9 0.4

Services less medical care services

290.106 291.310 292.017 3.0 0.7 0.2

Energy

236.829 260.937 254.791 -13.1 7.6 -2.4

All items less energy

243.487 244.373 244.636 1.7 0.5 0.1

All items less food and energy

242.806 243.957 244.138 1.5 0.5 0.1

Footnotes
(1) This index series was calculated using a Laspeyres estimator. All other item stratum index series were calculated using a geometric means estimator.
(2) Index is on a December 1982=100 base.
(3) Special index based on a substantially smaller sample.
(4) Indexes on a December 1993=100 base.
(5) Indexes on a December 1997=100 base.
 

- Data not available
NOTE: Index applies to a month as a whole, not to any specific date.
 

 

Last Modified Date: Friday, May 22, 2015