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LOS ANGELES AREA PRICES ROSE A MODERATE 0.1 PERCENT IN MAY DESPITE A 6.2 PERCENT INCREASE IN GASOLINE PRICES

 LOS ANGELES AREA PRICES ROSE A MODERATE 0.1 PERCENT
 IN MAY DESPITE A 6.2 PERCENT INCREASE IN GASOLINE PRICES
 LOS ANGELES, June 12 /PRNewswire/ -- Consumer prices in the greater Los Angeles area (Los Angeles, Orange, Riverside, San Bernardino, and Ventura counties) edged up 0.1 percent in May, according to Regional Commissioner Sam Hirabayashi of the U.S. Department of Labor's Bureau of Labor Statistics. He said that a 4.6 percent increase in energy costs (including motor and household fuels) led to the overall increase in local prices. Excluding energy, prices edged down 0.1 percent last month. Prices in the Los Angeles area had increased 0.2 percent in April and 0.4 percent in March. Consumer price index data for local areas are not seasonally adjusted.
 The Los Angeles area All Items Consumer Price Index for All Urban Consumers reached 146.0 in May (1982-84-100), 3.7 percent above May 1991 levels. This compares to increases of 4.9 percent and 4.6 percent in the years ending May 1990 and May 1991 respectively. So far this year, local prices have increased 2.0 percent, compared to 1.1 percent in the first five months of 1991.
 The transportation index rose 1.3 percent in the Los Angeles area in May. A 6.2 percent surge in gasoline prices accounted for most of the rise in transportation costs. Gasoline prices had increased 2.2 percent in April and the local gasoline index has advanced 11.6 percent so far this year and 11.3 percent when compared to May 1991. Public transportation costs advanced 1.4 percent in May and this index was 4.2 percent above year-ago levels. Overall transportation costs rose 5.2 percent from May 1991 to May 1992.
 Housing costs rose a moderate 0.1 percent despite a seasonal return to higher residential gas expenses which helped push up the fuel and other utilities index 1.5 percent. Shelter costs edged up 0.2 percent last month while the cost of household furnishings and operation fell 1.3 percent. The overall housing index rose 2.5 percent from May 1991 to May 1992.
 A 3.7 percent decrease in price tags for men's and boys' apparel helped push the apparel and upkeep index down 0.2 percent. Footwear prices rose 1.1 percent last month while the cost of women's and girls' apparel edged up 0.1 percent. When compared to May 1991, there were increases of 5.9 percent in men's and boys' apparel prices, 2.8 percent in women's and girls' apparel prices, and 3.7 percent in the cost of footwear. The overall index for apparel and upkeep rose 4.5 percent in the past year.
 The food and beverages index fell 0.9 percent as grocery prices (food at home) declined 1.7 percent due mainly to a 7.7 percent drop in prices for fruits and vegetables. Also declining last month were the index for meats, poultry, fish, and eggs, down 0.8 percent, and the cost of alcoholic beverages, down 0.4 percent. There were increases of 0.1 percent in both the dairy products index and the cost of eating out, and an advance of 0.6 percent in prices for cereals and bakery products. When compared to May 1991 levels, the cost of fruits and vegetables declined 10.7 percent, while the overall food and beverages index was up a moderate 1.9 percent.
 The local cost of medical care was up 8.3 percent over-the-year after increasing 0.7 percent in May. The entertainment index edged down 0.1 percent last month and was unchanged when compared to a year ago. The index for other goods and services decreased 0.1 percent despite a 0.5 percent increase in the cost of personal care.
 Consumer Price Index for All Urban Consumers:
 Indexes and percent changes for selected periods
 (Data are not seasonally adjusted)
 Los Angeles-Anaheim-Riverside, Calif.
 (1982-84-100, unless otherwise noted)
 Percent changes
 Indexes to May 1992
 from:
 Apr. May May Apr.
 1992 1992 1991 1992
 Expenditure category
 All items .......................... 145.8 146.0 3.7 0.1
 Food and beverages ............... 140.9 139.6 1.9 -.9
 Food ........................... 138.9 137.5 1.4 -1.0
 Food at home ................. 140.8 138.4 .1 -1.7
 Food away from home .......... 136.6 136.7 3.3 .1
 Alcoholic beverages ............ 160.4 159.7 6.3 -.4
 Housing .......................... 147.9 148.1 2.5 .1
 Shelter ........................ 157.6 157.9 2.6 .2
 Fuel and other utilities ....... 135.5 137.6 3.1 1.5
 Household furnishings and
 operation .................... 121.7 120.1 1.3 -1.3
 Apparel and upkeep ............... 136.3 136.0 4.5 -.2
 Transportation .................. 130.6 132.3 5.2 1.3
 Private transportation ......... 127.5 129.1 5.3 1.3
 Motor fuel ................... 99.5 105.6 10.7 6.1
 Public transportation .......... 175.4 177.9 4.2 1.4
 Medical care ..................... 189.5 190.8 8.3 .7
 Entertainment .................... 134.9 134.8 .0 -.1
 Other goods and services ......... 195.7 195.6 10.9 -.1
 Personal care .................. 154.3 155.1 6.2 .5
 Special indexes
 All items less energy .............. 149.7 149.6 3.7 -.1
 Energy ............................. 111.3 116.4 4.3 4.6
 -0- 6/12/92
 /CONTACT: Faith Heinemann, 213-252-7518; Leon Bornstein, 415-744-7163, both of the U.S. Dept. of Labor's Bureau of Labor Statistics/ CO: U.S. Dept. of Labor's Bureau of Labor Statistics ST: California IN: FIN SU: ECO


JL -- SF004 -- 9603 06/12/92 10:34 EDT
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Date:Jun 12, 1992
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