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News Release Information

20-1936-SAN
Tuesday, October 13, 2020

Contacts

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

Consumer Price Index, Riverside Area – September 2020

Area prices were up 0.5 percent over the past two months, up 1.7 percent from a year ago

Prices in the Riverside area, as measured by the Consumer Price Index for All Urban Consumers (CPI-U), increased 0.5 percent for the two months ending in September 2020, the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics reported today. Assistant Commissioner for Regional Operations Richard Holden noted that the September increase was influenced by higher prices for apparel. (Data in this report are not seasonally adjusted. Accordingly, bi-monthly changes may reflect seasonal influences.)

Over the last 12 months, the CPI-U rose 1.7 percent. The index for all items less food and energy increased 1.4 percent over the year. Food prices rose 6.7 percent. Energy prices declined 3.2 percent, largely the result of a decrease in the price of gasoline. (See table 1.)

Food

Food prices increased 0.7 percent for the two months ending in September. (See table 1.) Prices for food at home increased 1.4 percent. Higher prices for fruits and vegetables (5.2 percent) were partially offset by lower prices for meats, poultry, fish, and eggs (-1.8 percent). Prices for food away from home inched down 0.1 percent for the same period.

Over the year, food prices rose 6.7 percent. Prices for food at home increased 9.3 percent since a year ago, led by higher prices for fruits and vegetables (15.0 percent). Prices for food away from home advanced 3.9 percent.

Energy

The energy index rose 1.3 percent for the two months ending in September. The increase was mainly due to higher prices for gasoline (2.5 percent). Prices for electricity were unchanged, while prices for natural gas service decreased 0.5 percent for the same period.

Energy prices declined 3.2 percent over the year, largely due to lower prices for gasoline (-13.9 percent). Prices paid for electricity jumped 19.2 percent, and prices for natural gas service increased 13.8 percent during the past year.

All items less food and energy

The index for all items less food and energy increased 0.4 percent in the latest two-month period. Higher prices for apparel (15.5 percent), used cars and trucks (7.7 percent), and shelter (0.2 percent) were partially offset by lower prices for new vehicles (-1.9 percent), household furnishings and operations (-0.8 percent), and medical care (-0.7 percent).

Over the year, the index for all items less food and energy increased 1.4 percent. Components contributing to the increase included medical care (4.8 percent) and shelter (2.4 percent). Partly offsetting the increases was a price decrease in new and used motor vehicles (-3.2 percent).

The November 2020 Consumer Price Index for the Riverside area is scheduled to be released on December 10, 2020.

Coronavirus (COVID-19) Pandemic Impact on September 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 September 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 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 6,000 housing units and approximately 24,000 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 Riverside-San Bernardino-Ontario metropolitan area covered in this release consists of Riverside and San Bernardino 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

Riverside-San Bernardino-Ontario (December 2017=100 unless otherwise noted)
Item and Group

IndexesPercent change from-
Jul.
2020
Aug.
2020
Sep.
2020
Sep.
2019
Jul.
2020
Aug.
2020

Expenditure category

All items

107.640-108.2011.70.5-

Food and beverages

110.783-111.6046.70.7-

Food

111.011-111.8376.70.7-

Food at home

109.270110.587110.8439.31.40.2

Cereals and bakery products

116.199-115.70410.8-0.4-

Meats, poultry, fish, and eggs

108.036-106.0715.0-1.8-

Dairy and related products

103.481-107.6477.34.0-

Fruits and vegetables

111.362-117.17715.05.2-

Nonalcoholic beverages and beverage materials

112.022-115.3277.93.0-

Other food at home

106.548-107.7899.91.2-

Food away from home

112.518-112.4613.9-0.1-

Alcoholic beverages

107.212-107.9447.60.7-

Housing

110.441-110.5503.30.1-

Shelter

110.560110.544110.7812.40.20.2

Rent of primary residence

111.259111.381111.7533.60.40.3

Owners' equiv. rent of residences

110.760110.877110.9992.50.20.1

Owners' equiv. rent of primary residence

110.760110.877110.9992.50.20.1

Fuels and utilities

115.268-115.30011.80.0-

Household energy

114.128113.995114.04617.2-0.10.0

Energy services

114.413114.310114.29817.4-0.10.0

Electricity

110.345110.335110.34519.20.00.0

Utility (piped) gas service

130.434129.941129.83713.8-0.5-0.1

Household furnishings and operations

102.735-101.9341.4-0.8-

Apparel

92.714-107.0970.615.5-

Transportation

100.702-100.858-7.30.2-

Private transportation

102.123-102.148-6.00.0-

New and used motor vehicles

97.758-96.256-3.2-1.5-

New vehicles

103.427-101.4241.0-1.9-

Used cars and trucks

102.638-110.5189.27.7-

Motor fuel

101.290103.414103.754-14.02.40.3

Gasoline (all types)

101.478103.641104.005-13.92.50.4

Gasoline, unleaded regular(1)

101.372103.526103.940-14.12.50.4

Gasoline, unleaded midgrade(1)

102.596105.437105.862-12.33.20.4

Gasoline, unleaded premium(1)

101.764103.858103.953-13.02.20.1

Motor vehicle insurance

116.349-116.3495.70.0-

Medical care

110.356-109.6104.8-0.7-

Recreation

103.275-102.6471.3-0.6-

Education and communication

106.717-106.7711.10.1-

Tuition, other school fees, and child care

118.434-119.1794.30.6-

Other goods and services

107.798-109.1313.41.2-

Commodity and service group

All items

107.640-108.2011.70.5-

Commodities

104.650-106.2680.71.5-

Commodities less food & beverages

101.019-103.104-2.82.1-

Nondurables less food & beverages

98.454-102.736-5.74.3-

Durables

103.246-102.9810.9-0.3-

Services

109.486-109.4282.3-0.1-

Special aggregate indexes

All items less medical care

107.454-108.1051.50.6-

All items less shelter

106.015-106.7761.30.7-

Commodities less food

101.155-103.201-2.52.0-

Nondurables

105.002-107.4460.82.3-

Nondurables less food

98.875-102.968-5.04.1-

Services less rent of shelter

107.998-107.4682.1-0.5-

Services less medical care services

109.153-109.0921.9-0.1-

Energy

107.068108.276108.499-3.21.30.2

All items less energy

107.667-108.1512.10.4-

All items less food and energy

107.156-107.5841.40.4-

Footnotes
(1) Special index based on a substantially smaller sample.

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

 

Last Modified Date: Tuesday, October 13, 2020