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News Release Information

20-1208-SAN
Wednesday, June 10, 2020

Contacts

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
Month 2016 2017 2018 2019 2020
1-month 12-month 1-month 12-month 1-month 12-month 1-month 12-month 1-month 12-month

January

0.7 3.1 0.9 2.1 0.8 3.5 0.7 3.2 0.8 3.1

February

0.0 2.4 0.6 2.7 0.7 3.6 0.1 2.5 0.3 3.4

March

0.3 1.7 0.3 2.7 0.4 3.8 0.6 2.7 -0.7 1.9

April

0.2 2.0 0.2 2.7 0.4 4.0 1.0 3.3 -0.3 0.7

May

0.5 1.4 0.3 2.5 0.4 4.1 0.2 3.1 0.4 0.9

June

0.1 1.8 -0.2 2.2 -0.2 4.0 0.0 3.3

July

0.0 1.1 0.3 2.5 0.2 3.9 0.1 3.3

August

0.0 1.4 0.3 2.8 0.2 3.9 0.0 3.0

September

0.2 1.9 0.4 3.1 0.5 3.9 0.5 3.0

October

0.4 2.2 0.4 3.1 0.5 4.1 0.7 3.2

November

-0.4 1.8 0.1 3.6 -0.3 3.6 -0.3 3.2

December

0.0 2.0 0.0 3.6 -0.3 3.2 -0.6 3.0

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

Indexes Percent change from-
Mar.
2020
Apr.
2020
May
2020
May
2019
Mar.
2020
Apr.
2020

Expenditure category

All items

276.589 275.853 276.842 0.9 0.1 0.4

All items (1967=100)

817.166 814.991 817.913 - - -

Food and beverages

271.669 276.101 278.810 4.7 2.6 1.0

Food

273.203 276.185 279.152 4.5 2.2 1.1

Food at home

258.171 262.351 267.566 4.2 3.6 2.0

Cereals and bakery products

271.720 284.534 282.739 2.3 4.1 -0.6

Meats, poultry, fish, and eggs

283.766 288.203 306.865 8.7 8.1 6.5

Dairy and related products

250.076 260.443 263.686 6.5 5.4 1.2

Fruits and vegetables

348.884 348.901 347.840 1.4 -0.3 -0.3

Nonalcoholic beverages and beverage materials(1)

261.974 267.840 271.735 4.7 3.7 1.5

Other food at home

196.346 196.149 199.090 1.7 1.4 1.5

Food away from home

285.087 286.872 287.618 4.9 0.9 0.3

Alcoholic beverages

234.149 255.200 254.708 6.4 8.8 -0.2

Housing

321.162 322.624 324.152 3.3 0.9 0.5

Shelter

372.238 373.697 374.276 3.5 0.5 0.2

Rent of primary residence(2)

397.220 398.555 399.259 4.4 0.5 0.2

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

387.573 389.571 390.476 3.9 0.7 0.2

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

387.550 389.549 390.454 3.9 0.7 0.2

Fuels and utilities

332.849 332.824 349.707 6.6 5.1 5.1

Household energy

285.837 285.806 306.992 9.0 7.4 7.4

Energy services(2)

284.438 284.472 305.686 9.1 7.5 7.5

Electricity(2)

336.323 332.952 345.607 6.9 2.8 3.8

Utility (piped) gas service(2)

216.079 223.100 264.700 15.8 22.5 18.6

Household furnishings and operations

119.239 121.095 120.960 -1.5 1.4 -0.1

Apparel

109.624 103.359 103.244 -5.0 -5.8 -0.1

Transportation

206.780 196.441 194.270 -13.3 -6.0 -1.1

Private transportation

205.655 195.216 192.695 -12.6 -6.3 -1.3

New and used motor vehicles(4)

90.780 90.854 90.029 -2.0 -0.8 -0.9

New vehicles(1)

171.255 170.766 172.184 0.7 0.5 0.8

Used cars and trucks(1)

269.562 266.420 264.445 -0.7 -1.9 -0.7

Motor fuel

252.972 222.500 215.604 -30.5 -14.8 -3.1

Gasoline (all types)

247.056 217.188 210.463 -30.5 -14.8 -3.1

Gasoline, unleaded regular(4)

246.587 216.272 209.198 -31.2 -15.2 -3.3

Gasoline, unleaded midgrade(4)(5)

239.988 213.621 205.559 -29.2 -14.3 -3.8

Gasoline, unleaded premium(4)

238.851 212.267 207.318 -27.8 -13.2 -2.3

Motor vehicle insurance(1)

786.324 679.162 679.162 -12.4 -13.6 0.0

Medical care

500.341 499.720 511.177 5.6 2.2 2.3

Recreation(6)

107.776 108.317 107.591 2.8 -0.2 -0.7

Education and communication(6)

148.729 149.159 149.334 1.6 0.4 0.1

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

1,960.820 1,963.667 1,968.023 3.9 0.4 0.2

Other goods and services

445.003 450.417 449.121 3.2 0.9 -0.3

Commodity and service group

All items

276.589 275.853 276.842 0.9 0.1 0.4

Commodities

182.697 180.993 181.378 -3.1 -0.7 0.2

Commodities less food & beverages

137.012 132.570 131.888 -9.2 -3.7 -0.5

Nondurables less food & beverages

185.427 176.017 174.971 -12.5 -5.6 -0.6

Durables

90.062 89.794 89.441 -3.6 -0.7 -0.4

Services

360.201 360.450 362.004 2.8 0.5 0.4

Special aggregate indexes

All items less medical care

266.878 266.142 266.754 0.6 0.0 0.2

All items less shelter

234.478 232.812 233.970 -0.9 -0.2 0.5

Commodities less food

141.363 137.783 137.103 -8.3 -3.0 -0.5

Nondurables

229.726 227.215 228.048 -2.9 -0.7 0.4

Nondurables less food

190.854 183.606 182.591 -10.8 -4.3 -0.6

Services less rent of shelter(3)

352.444 350.960 353.953 1.8 0.4 0.9

Services less medical care services

347.252 347.441 348.431 2.4 0.3 0.3

Energy

266.478 246.634 249.692 -17.4 -6.3 1.2

All items less energy

279.462 280.000 280.859 2.2 0.5 0.3

All items less food and energy

280.815 280.885 281.340 1.8 0.2 0.2

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