Department of Labor Logo United States Department of Labor
Dot gov

The .gov means it's official.
Federal government websites often end in .gov or .mil. Before sharing sensitive information, make sure you're on a federal government site.

Https

The site is secure.
The https:// ensures that you are connecting to the official website and that any information you provide is encrypted and transmitted securely.

News Release Information

20-1934-SAN
Tuesday, October 13, 2020

Contacts

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

Consumer Price Index, West Region — September 2020

Area prices were unchanged over the past month, up 1.6 percent from a year ago

Prices in the West Region, as measured by the Consumer Price Index for All Urban Consumers (CPI-U), were unchanged in September, the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics reported today. (See table A.) A decrease in motor vehicle insurance helped offset higher prices for 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 rose 1.6 percent. (See chart 1 and table A.) The index for all items less food and energy increased 1.6 percent over the year. Food prices rose 5.0 percent. Energy prices declined 6.8 percent, largely the result of a decrease in the price of gasoline. (See table 1.)

Food

Food prices were unchanged for the month of September. (See table 1.) Prices for food at home decreased 0.3 percent, but prices for food away from home advanced 0.4 percent for the same period.

Over the year, food prices rose 5.0 percent. Prices for food away from home advanced 5.1 percent, and prices for food at home increased 4.9 percent since a year ago. All food group prices increased with meats, poultry, fish, and eggs making the largest impact.

Energy

The energy index inched up 0.2 percent over the month. The increase was mainly due to higher prices for gasoline (0.4 percent). Prices for natural gas service rose 1.8 percent, but prices for electricity decreased 0.5 percent for the same period.

Energy prices declined 6.8 percent over the year, largely due to lower prices for gasoline (-13.9 percent). Prices paid for natural gas service advanced 8.4 percent, and prices for electricity rose 2.0 percent during the past year.

All items less food and energy

The index for all items less food and energy was unchanged in September. Higher prices for apparel (2.5 percent) and used cars and trucks (2.0 percent) were countered by lower prices for motor vehicle insurance (-4.3 percent) and recreation (-0.6 percent).

Over the year, the index for all items less food and energy increased 1.6 percent. Components contributing to the increase included medical care (5.9 percent) and shelter (2.0 percent). Partly offsetting the increases were price decreases in motor vehicle insurance (-8.1 percent) and apparel (-4.9 percent).

Table A. West region 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

0.52.60.52.50.53.10.22.70.32.9

February

0.12.10.63.00.53.10.22.40.43.1

March

0.21.50.33.10.43.20.42.4-0.22.5

April

0.51.80.32.90.43.20.82.9-0.41.3

May

0.51.50.22.60.53.50.52.90.10.8

June

0.21.60.02.50.23.60.02.70.41.2

July

0.11.40.12.50.13.60.02.70.51.7

August

0.01.50.22.70.23.60.12.60.31.9

September

0.32.00.52.90.33.40.32.60.01.6

October

0.32.30.32.90.43.50.52.8

November

-0.22.30.03.1-0.23.3-0.12.8

December

0.02.50.13.1-0.23.1-0.22.8

The October 2020 Consumer Price Index for the West Region is scheduled to be released on November 12, 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 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 West Region covered in this release is comprised of the following thirteen states: Alaska, Arizona, California, Colorado, Hawaii, Idaho, Montana, Nevada, New Mexico, Oregon, Utah, Washington, and Wyoming.

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

West (1982-84=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

275.597276.443276.4221.60.30.0

All items (December 1977=100)

445.488446.855446.821   

Food and beverages

278.110279.790279.7304.80.60.0

Food

278.597280.333280.3325.00.60.0

Food at home

261.964263.762262.9264.90.4-0.3

Cereals and bakery products

267.275268.954270.3100.81.10.5

Meats, poultry, fish, and eggs

280.540279.385278.5137.4-0.7-0.3

Dairy and related products

243.167247.264248.0057.32.00.3

Fruits and vegetables

345.610350.341348.5514.70.9-0.5

Nonalcoholic beverages and beverage materials

184.062187.429185.6227.90.8-1.0

Other food at home

220.641221.197220.0323.0-0.3-0.5

Food away from home

300.104301.748302.8935.10.90.4

Alcoholic beverages

268.402269.351268.5661.70.1-0.3

Housing

308.454308.782308.7692.30.10.0

Shelter

356.272356.336356.1352.00.0-0.1

Rent of primary residence(1)

379.785379.915380.3722.80.20.1

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

373.920374.293374.7612.40.20.1

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

373.926374.292374.7522.40.20.1

Fuels and utilities

317.905318.565318.5893.20.20.0

Household energy

268.110268.310268.2753.30.10.0

Energy services(1)

270.792270.918270.8553.30.00.0

Electricity(1)

303.123302.959301.4082.0-0.6-0.5

Utility (piped) gas service(1)

210.489211.367215.1128.42.21.8

Household furnishings and operations

137.821138.799139.3404.01.10.4

Apparel

109.244111.588114.364-4.94.72.5

Transportation

209.147210.669210.598-4.00.70.0

Private transportation

206.739208.959208.569-3.00.9-0.2

New and used motor vehicles(3)

100.337102.058102.2152.51.90.2

New vehicles

149.904149.765149.7761.5-0.10.0

New cars and trucks(3)(4)

104.112104.015104.0211.5-0.10.0

New cars(4)

148.599148.458148.3911.7-0.10.0

Used cars and trucks

135.518143.303146.1709.67.92.0

Motor fuel

225.536229.485230.476-13.92.20.4

Gasoline (all types)

224.837228.850229.834-13.92.20.4

Gasoline, unleaded regular(4)

221.156225.212226.172-14.22.30.4

Gasoline, unleaded midgrade(4)(5)

218.152222.275222.975-12.72.20.3

Gasoline, unleaded premium(4)

225.608229.037230.049-12.22.00.4

Motor vehicle insurance(6)

832.394813.922778.628-8.1-6.5-4.3

Medical Care

544.125544.247543.1515.9-0.2-0.2

Medical care commodities

428.925428.583426.7209.8-0.5-0.4

Medical care services

579.688579.956579.1054.9-0.1-0.1

Professional services

369.491366.673366.8692.3-0.70.1

Recreation(3)

115.497115.718115.0610.2-0.4-0.6

Education and communication(3)

140.134140.519140.3431.60.1-0.1

Tuition, other school fees, and child care(6)

1,503.4451,510.8161,511.4011.30.50.0

Other goods and services

461.650458.151457.1911.7-1.0-0.2

Commodity and Service Group

All Items

275.597276.443276.4221.60.30.0

Commodities

188.740190.608191.2811.61.30.4

Commodities less food & beverages

145.715147.562148.480-0.51.90.6

Nondurables less food & beverages

186.745188.437189.214-4.01.30.4

Nondurables less food, beverages, and apparel

241.203242.467241.891-3.70.3-0.2

Durables

107.242109.011109.9303.32.50.8

Services

356.613356.307355.5331.6-0.3-0.2

Rent of shelter(2)

379.458379.536379.3132.00.0-0.1

Transportation services

306.127300.958296.416-7.7-3.2-1.5

Other services

366.379366.382365.0531.8-0.4-0.4

Special aggregate indexes:

All items less medical care

263.401264.274264.2981.20.30.0

All items less food

275.250275.950275.9261.00.20.0

All items less shelter

243.949245.099245.1481.40.50.0

Commodities less food

150.168152.004152.881-0.41.80.6

Nondurables

232.347234.043234.4160.90.90.2

Nondurables less food

192.758194.407195.084-3.51.20.3

Nondurables less food and apparel

243.754244.984244.386-3.00.3-0.2

Services less rent of shelter(2)

367.480366.653365.0921.0-0.6-0.4

Services less medical care services

341.080340.737339.9691.2-0.3-0.2

Energy

247.429249.846250.416-6.81.20.2

All items less energy

279.831280.578280.5162.10.20.0

All items less food and energy

280.839281.410281.3381.60.20.0

Commodities less food and energy commodities

141.518143.128143.9882.11.70.6

Energy commodities

229.858233.876234.889-13.72.20.4

Services less energy services

362.948362.617361.7991.5-0.3-0.2

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) Indexes on a December 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.
(6) Indexes on a December 1977=100 base.

- Data not available
Regions defined as the four Census regions. West includes Alaska, Arizona, California, Colorado, Hawaii, Idaho, Montana, Nevada, New Mexico, Oregon, Utah, Washington, and Wyoming.
NOTE: Index applies to a month as a whole, not to any specific date. Data not seasonally adjusted.

 

Last Modified Date: Tuesday, October 13, 2020