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News Release Information

Friday, April 15, 2016

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

Average Energy Prices, Los Angeles-Riverside-Orange County, March 2016

Gasoline prices averaged $2.732 a gallon in the Los Angeles-Riverside-Orange County area in March 2016, the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics reported today. Assistant Commissioner for Regional Operations Richard Holden noted that area gasoline prices were 63.9 cents less than last March when they averaged $3.371 per gallon. Los Angeles area households paid an average of 21.3 cents per kilowatt hour (kWh) of electricity in March 2016, similar to the 21.5 cents per kWh paid in March 2015. The average cost of utility (piped) gas at $1.108 per therm in March was less than the $1.161 per therm spent last year. (Data in this release are not seasonally adjusted; accordingly, over-the-year-analysis is used throughout.) 

At $2.732 a gallon, Los Angeles area consumers paid 35.2 percent more than the $2.021 national average in March 2016. A year earlier, consumers in the Los Angeles area paid 32.5 percent more than the national average for a gallon of gasoline. The local price of a gallon of gasoline has ranged from 11.4 to 35.2 percent above the national average in the month of March during the past five years. (See chart 1.)

The 21.3 cents per kWh Los Angeles households paid for electricity in March 2016 was 59.0 percent more than the nationwide average of 13.4 cents per kWh. Last March, electricity costs were 58.1 percent higher in Los Angeles compared to the nation. In the past five years, prices paid by Los Angeles area consumers for electricity exceeded the U.S. average by 58.1 percent or more in the month of March. (See chart 2.)

Prices paid by Los Angeles area consumers for utility (piped) gas, commonly referred to as natural gas, were $1.108 per therm, or 25.3 percent more compared to the national average in March 2016 ($0.884 per therm). A year earlier, area consumers paid 17.9 percent more per therm for natural gas compared to the nation. In the Los Angeles area over the past five years, the per therm cost for natural gas in March has varied between 4.8 percent below and 25.3 percent above the U.S. average. (See chart 3.)

The Los Angeles-Riverside-Orange County, Calif. metropolitan area consists of Los Angeles, Orange, Riverside, San Bernardino and Ventura Counties in California.

Technical Note

Average prices are estimated from Consumer Price Index (CPI) data for selected commodity series to support the research and analytic needs of CPI data users. Average prices for electricity, utility (piped) gas, and gasoline are published monthly for the U.S. city average, the 4 regions, the 3 population size classes, 10 region/size-class cross-classifications, and the 14 largest local index areas. For electricity, average prices per kilowatt-hour (kWh) are published. For utility (piped) gas, average prices per therm, are published. For gasoline, the average price per gallon is published. Average prices for commonly available grades of gasoline are published as well as the average price across all grades.

All eligible prices are converted to a price per normalized quantity. These prices are then used to estimate a price for a defined fixed quantity. The average price per kilowatt-hour represents the total bill divided by the kilowatt-hour usage. The total bill is the sum of all items applicable to all consumers appearing on an electricity bill including, but not limited to, variable rates per kWh, fixed costs, taxes, surcharges, and credits. This calculation also applies to the average price per therm for utility (piped) gas.

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. Average prices for gasoline, electricity, and utility (piped) gas, Los Angeles-Riverside-Orange County and the United States, March 2015-March 2016, not seasonally adjusted
  Gasoline per gallon Electricity per kWh Utility (piped) gas per therm
Los Angeles area United States Los Angeles area United States Los Angeles area United States


$3.371 $2.544 $0.215 $0.136 $1.161 $0.985


3.229 2.545 0.217 0.137 1.124 0.947


3.898 2.832 0.217 0.137 1.124 0.930


3.625 2.889 0.206 0.143 1.261 0.942


4.022 2.893 0.206 0.142 1.259 0.933


3.684 2.745 0.205 0.142 1.275 0.932


3.206 2.463 0.205 0.141 1.261 0.921


2.956 2.357 0.213 0.136 1.253 0.909


2.850 2.249 0.213 0.134 1.104 0.903


2.842 2.125 0.209 0.133 1.153 0.892


2.909 2.034 0.213 0.134 1.155 0.898


2.502 1.833 0.213 0.134 1.152 0.895


2.732 2.021 0.213 0.134 1.108 0.884


Last Modified Date: Friday, April 15, 2016