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News Release Information

20-1208-SAN
Wednesday, June 10, 2020

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

Consumer Price Index, Los Angeles area – May 2020

Area prices were up 0.4 percent over the past month, up 0.9 percent from a year ago

Prices in the Los Angeles area, as measured by the Consumer Price Index for All Urban Consumers (CPI-U), advanced 0.4 percent in May, the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics reported today. (See table A.) Assistant Commissioner for Regional Operations Richard Holden noted that the May increase was influenced by higher prices for food and medical care. (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 rose 0.9 percent. (See chart 1 and table A.) The index for all items less food and energy advanced 1.8 percent over the year. Food prices rose 4.5 percent. Energy prices fell 17.4 percent, largely the result of a decrease in the price of gasoline. (See table 1.)

Food

Food prices increased 1.1 percent for the month of May. (See table 1.) Prices for food at home rose 2.0 percent, and prices for food away from home advanced 0.3 percent for the same period.

Over the year, food prices rose 4.5 percent. Prices for food away from home increased 4.9 percent since a year ago, and prices for food at home rose 4.2 percent.

Energy

The energy index increased 1.2 percent over the month. The increase was mainly due to higher prices for natural gas service (18.6 percent). Prices for electricity rose 3.8 percent, but prices for gasoline decreased 3.1 percent for the same period.

Energy prices fell 17.4 percent over the year, largely due to lower prices for gasoline (-30.5 percent). Prices paid for natural gas service increased 15.8 percent, and prices for electricity advanced 6.9 percent during the past year.

All items less food and energy

The index for all items less food and energy moved up 0.2 percent in May. Higher prices for medical care (2.3 percent) and shelter (0.2 percent) were partially offset by lower prices for new and used motor vehicles (-0.9 percent) and recreation (-0.7 percent).

Over the year, the index for all items less food and energy advanced 1.8 percent. Components contributing to the increase included medical care (5.6 percent) and shelter (3.5 percent). Partly offsetting the increases were price decreases in apparel (-5.0 percent) and household furnishings and operations (-1.5 percent).

Table A. Los Angeles-Long Beach-Anaheim, CA, CPI-U 1-month and 12-month percent changes, all items index, not seasonally adjusted
Month20162017201820192020
1-month12-month1-month12-month1-month12-month1-month12-month1-month12-month

January

0.73.10.92.10.83.50.73.20.83.1

February

0.02.40.62.70.73.60.12.50.33.4

March

0.31.70.32.70.43.80.62.7-0.71.9

April

0.22.00.22.70.44.01.03.3-0.30.7

May

0.51.40.32.50.44.10.23.10.40.9

June

0.11.8-0.22.2-0.24.00.03.3

July

0.01.10.32.50.23.90.13.3

August

0.01.40.32.80.23.90.03.0

September

0.21.90.43.10.53.90.53.0

October

0.42.20.43.10.54.10.73.2

November

-0.41.80.13.6-0.33.6-0.33.2

December

0.02.00.03.6-0.33.2-0.63.0

The June 2020 Consumer Price Index for the Los Angeles area is scheduled to be released on July 14, 2020.

Coronavirus (COVID-19) Pandemic Impact on May 2020 Consumer Price Index Data

Data collection by personal visit for the Consumer Price Index (CPI) program has been suspended since March 16, 2020. When possible, data normally collected by personal visit were collected either online or by phone. Additionally, data collection in May was affected by the temporary closing or limited operations of certain types of establishments. These factors resulted in an increase in the number of prices considered temporarily unavailable and imputed.

While the CPI program attempted to collect as much data as possible, many indexes are based on smaller amounts of collected prices than usual, and a small number of indexes that are normally published were not published this month. Additional information is available at https://www.bls.gov/covid19/effects-of-covid-19-pandemic-on-consumer-price-index.htm.


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 93 percent of the total population and (2) a CPI for Urban Wage Earners and Clerical Workers (CPI-W) which covers 29 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 75 urban areas across the country from about 5,000 housing units and approximately 22,000 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-Long Beach-Anaheim. metropolitan area covered in this release is comprised of Los Angeles and Orange 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-Long Beach-Anaheim (1982-84=100 unless otherwise noted)
Item and Group

IndexesPercent change from-
Mar.
2020
Apr.
2020
May
2020
May
2019
Mar.
2020
Apr.
2020

Expenditure category

All items

276.589275.853276.8420.90.10.4

All items (1967=100)

817.166814.991817.913---

Food and beverages

271.669276.101278.8104.72.61.0

Food

273.203276.185279.1524.52.21.1

Food at home

258.171262.351267.5664.23.62.0

Cereals and bakery products

271.720284.534282.7392.34.1-0.6

Meats, poultry, fish, and eggs

283.766288.203306.8658.78.16.5

Dairy and related products

250.076260.443263.6866.55.41.2

Fruits and vegetables

348.884348.901347.8401.4-0.3-0.3

Nonalcoholic beverages and beverage materials(1)

261.974267.840271.7354.73.71.5

Other food at home

196.346196.149199.0901.71.41.5

Food away from home

285.087286.872287.6184.90.90.3

Alcoholic beverages

234.149255.200254.7086.48.8-0.2

Housing

321.162322.624324.1523.30.90.5

Shelter

372.238373.697374.2763.50.50.2

Rent of primary residence(2)

397.220398.555399.2594.40.50.2

Owners' equiv. rent of residences(2)(3)

387.573389.571390.4763.90.70.2

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

387.550389.549390.4543.90.70.2

Fuels and utilities

332.849332.824349.7076.65.15.1

Household energy

285.837285.806306.9929.07.47.4

Energy services(2)

284.438284.472305.6869.17.57.5

Electricity(2)

336.323332.952345.6076.92.83.8

Utility (piped) gas service(2)

216.079223.100264.70015.822.518.6

Household furnishings and operations

119.239121.095120.960-1.51.4-0.1

Apparel

109.624103.359103.244-5.0-5.8-0.1

Transportation

206.780196.441194.270-13.3-6.0-1.1

Private transportation

205.655195.216192.695-12.6-6.3-1.3

New and used motor vehicles(4)

90.78090.85490.029-2.0-0.8-0.9

New vehicles(1)

171.255170.766172.1840.70.50.8

Used cars and trucks(1)

269.562266.420264.445-0.7-1.9-0.7

Motor fuel

252.972222.500215.604-30.5-14.8-3.1

Gasoline (all types)

247.056217.188210.463-30.5-14.8-3.1

Gasoline, unleaded regular(4)

246.587216.272209.198-31.2-15.2-3.3

Gasoline, unleaded midgrade(4)(5)

239.988213.621205.559-29.2-14.3-3.8

Gasoline, unleaded premium(4)

238.851212.267207.318-27.8-13.2-2.3

Motor vehicle insurance(1)

786.324679.162679.162-12.4-13.60.0

Medical care

500.341499.720511.1775.62.22.3

Recreation(6)

107.776108.317107.5912.8-0.2-0.7

Education and communication(6)

148.729149.159149.3341.60.40.1

Tuition, other school fees, and child care(1)

1,960.8201,963.6671,968.0233.90.40.2

Other goods and services

445.003450.417449.1213.20.9-0.3

Commodity and service group

All items

276.589275.853276.8420.90.10.4

Commodities

182.697180.993181.378-3.1-0.70.2

Commodities less food & beverages

137.012132.570131.888-9.2-3.7-0.5

Nondurables less food & beverages

185.427176.017174.971-12.5-5.6-0.6

Durables

90.06289.79489.441-3.6-0.7-0.4

Services

360.201360.450362.0042.80.50.4

Special aggregate indexes

All items less medical care

266.878266.142266.7540.60.00.2

All items less shelter

234.478232.812233.970-0.9-0.20.5

Commodities less food

141.363137.783137.103-8.3-3.0-0.5

Nondurables

229.726227.215228.048-2.9-0.70.4

Nondurables less food

190.854183.606182.591-10.8-4.3-0.6

Services less rent of shelter(3)

352.444350.960353.9531.80.40.9

Services less medical care services

347.252347.441348.4312.40.30.3

Energy

266.478246.634249.692-17.4-6.31.2

All items less energy

279.462280.000280.8592.20.50.3

All items less food and energy

280.815280.885281.3401.80.20.2

Footnotes
(1) Indexes on a December 1977=100 base.
(2) This index series was calculated using a Laspeyres estimator. All other item stratum index series were calculated using a geometric means estimator.
(3) Indexes on a December 1982=100 base.
(4) Special index based on a substantially smaller sample.
(5) Indexes on a December 1993=100 base.
(6) 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: Wednesday, June 10, 2020