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Quarter 2, 2017 Cost of Living Index Release


Among the 253 urban areas that participated in the second quarter 2017 Cost of Living Index, the after-tax cost for a professional/managerial standard of living ranged from more than twice the national average in New York (Manhattan) NY to more than 20 percent below the national average in McAllen, TX. The Cost of Living Index is published quarterly by C2ER – The Council for Community and Economic Research.

The Ten Most and Least Expensive Urban Areas
in the Cost of Living Index (COLI)
Second Quarter 2017
National Average for 253 Urban Areas = 100
 Most Expensive  Least Expensive
Ranking Urban Areas COL Index Ranking Urban Areas COL Index
1 New York (Manhattan) NY 235.0 1 McAllen TX 76.0
2 San Francisco CA 192.3 2 Conway AR 77.8
3 Honolulu HI 186.0 3 Harlingen TX 78.5
4 New York (Brooklyn) NY 180.2 4 Richmond IN 78.7
5 Washington DC 153.4 5 Tupelo MS 79.2
6 Orange County CA 152.4 6 Kalamazoo MI 80.5
7 Oakland CA 150.4 7 Wichita Falls TX 80.5
8 San Diego CA 146.9 8 Knoxville TN 82.2
9 Seattle WA 146.9 9 Martinsville-Henry County VA 82.4
10 Hilo HI 146.8 10 Memphis TN 82.8

The Cost of Living Index measures regional differences in the cost of consumer goods and services, excluding taxes and non-consumer expenditures, for professional and managerial households in the top income quintile. It is based on more than 90,000 prices covering almost 60 different items for which prices are collected three times a year by chambers of commerce, economic development organizations or university applied economic centers in each participating urban area. Small differences in the index numbers should not be interpreted as significant.

The composite index is based on six components: housing, utilities, grocery items, transportation, health care, and miscellaneous goods and services.

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