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News Release Information

20-1545-SAN
Wednesday, August 12, 2020

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

Consumer Price Index, San Diego Area – July 2020

Area prices were up 1.4 percent over the past two months, up 2.1 percent from a year ago

Prices in the San Diego area, as measured by the Consumer Price Index for All Urban Consumers (CPI-U), advanced 1.4 percent for the two months ending in July 2020, the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics reported today. Assistant Commissioner for Regional Operations Richard Holden noted that the July increase was influenced by higher prices for gasoline. (Data in this report are not seasonally adjusted. Accordingly, bi-monthly changes may reflect seasonal influences.)

Over the last 12 months, the CPI-U increased 2.1 percent. The index for all items less food and energy increased 2.5 percent over the year. Food prices rose 5.9 percent. Energy prices fell 11.9 percent, largely the result of a decrease in the price of gasoline. (See table 1.)

Food

Food prices were unchanged for the two months ending in July. (See table 1.) Prices for food at home declined 0.6 percent, but prices for food away from home rose 0.5 percent for the same period.

Over the year, food prices rose 5.9 percent. Prices for food away from home advanced 6.2 percent since a year ago, and prices for food at home increased 5.6 percent.

Energy

The energy index advanced 7.9 percent for the two months ending in July. The increase was mainly due to higher prices for gasoline (11.1 percent). Prices for electricity rose 4.3 percent, and prices for natural gas service rose 0.6 percent for the same period.

Energy prices fell 11.9 percent over the year, largely due to lower prices for gasoline (-17.8 percent). Prices for electricity decreased 7.0 percent, but prices paid for natural gas service jumped 27.2 percent during the past year.

All items less food and energy

The index for all items less food and energy advanced 1.3 percent in the latest two-month period. Higher prices for education and communication (4.4 percent), apparel (3.7 percent), new and used motor vehicles (2.8 percent), and medical care, (2.5 percent) were partially offset by lower prices for other goods and services (-0.4 percent).

Over the year, the index for all items less food and energy increased 2.5 percent. Components contributing to the increase included recreation (8.1 percent), medical care (5.9 percent), and shelter (2.7 percent). Partly offsetting the increases was a price decrease in new and used motor vehicles (-1.5 percent).

The September 2020 Consumer Price Index for the San Diego area is scheduled to be released on October 13, 2020.

Coronavirus (COVID-19) Impact on July 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 July 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 San Diego-Carlsbad, CA metropolitan area covered in this release consists of San Diego County 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

San Diego-Carlsbad (1982-84=100 unless otherwise noted)
Item and Group

IndexesPercent change from-
May
2020
Jun.
2020
Jul.
2020
Jul.
2019
May
2020
Jun.
2020

Expenditure category

All items

301.317-305.6112.11.4-

All items (1967=100)

1,018.846-1,033.363---

Food and beverages

272.698-273.7276.00.4-

Food

271.648-271.5175.90.0-

Food at home

242.896243.062241.5465.6-0.6-0.6

Cereals and bakery products

285.666-278.9014.2-2.4-

Meats, poultry, fish, and eggs

260.270-257.59712.2-1.0-

Dairy and related products

183.430-191.4392.14.4-

Fruits and vegetables

255.750-263.305-0.53.0-

Nonalcoholic beverages and beverage materials(1)

283.417-270.6758.3-4.5-

Other food at home

228.205-225.6155.2-1.1-

Food away from home

309.408-311.0556.20.5-

Alcoholic beverages

273.728-286.0866.84.5-

Housing

362.981-365.2942.20.6-

Shelter

413.708413.980414.7162.70.20.2

Rent of primary residence(2)

412.275412.455412.7063.50.10.1

Owners' equiv. rent of residences(2)

440.308439.847440.5462.70.10.2

Owners' equiv. rent of primary residence(2)

440.308439.847440.5462.70.10.2

Fuels and utilities

342.936-350.552-0.22.2-

Household energy

310.599321.122321.113-1.03.40.0

Energy services

307.048317.908317.590-0.93.4-0.1

Electricity

288.932301.433301.433-7.04.30.0

Utility (piped) gas service

263.536266.365265.24227.20.6-0.4

Household furnishings and operations

192.679-197.9810.92.8-

Apparel

150.008-155.5921.53.7-

Transportation

210.241-218.122-7.13.7-

Private transportation

206.604-216.534-5.74.8-

New and used motor vehicles(3)

104.660-107.622-1.52.8-

New vehicles(1)

232.325-237.9271.82.4-

Used cars and trucks(1)

229.747-234.349-1.42.0-

Motor fuel

225.398238.486250.256-17.811.04.9

Gasoline (all types)

225.247238.423250.223-17.811.14.9

Gasoline, unleaded regular(4)

232.071245.527258.293-18.211.35.2

Gasoline, unleaded midgrade(4)(5)

199.311210.540218.677-17.49.73.9

Gasoline, unleaded premium(4)

234.710249.029259.058-16.010.44.0

Motor vehicle insurance(1)

491.321-535.5570.39.0-

Medical care

508.824-521.4095.92.5-

Recreation(3)

162.912-164.7468.11.1-

Education and communication(3)

129.346-135.0652.94.4-

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

1,538.358-1,540.026-2.40.1-

Other goods and services

419.225-417.6821.6-0.4-

Commodity and service group

All items

301.317-305.6112.11.4-

Commodities

202.947-207.0121.12.0-

Commodities less food & beverages

165.803-171.588-2.63.5-

Nondurables less food & beverages

191.263-198.880-4.44.0-

Durables

138.283-142.237-0.42.9-

Services

388.442-392.7302.61.1-

Special aggregate indexes

All items less medical care

291.542-295.4481.81.3-

All items less shelter

257.058-262.4851.72.1-

Commodities less food

170.750-176.845-1.93.6-

Nondurables

234.086-238.1781.61.7-

Nondurables less food

199.257-207.332-3.14.1-

Services less rent of shelter(2)

377.760-386.1892.42.2-

Services less medical care services

375.000-378.4482.10.9-

Energy

251.387263.473271.177-11.97.92.9

All items less energy

306.989-310.4123.01.1-

All items less food and energy

314.477-318.6902.51.3-

Footnotes
(1) Indexes on a November 1977=100 base.
(2) Indexes on a November 1982=100 base.
(3) Indexes on a December 1997=100 base.
(4) Special index based on a substantially smaller sample.
(5) Indexes on a December 1993=100 base.

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

 

Last Modified Date: Wednesday, August 12, 2020