North Louisiana's Cost of Living Below National Average (1)
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    June 19, 2019

    North Louisiana's Cost of Living Below National Average

    (MONROE - SHREVEPORT, La)  Families in North Louisiana get more bang for their buck, because the cost of living for our region remains below the national average. The Cost of Living Index for the first quarter of 2019 shows that the Monroe Metropolitan Statistical Area (MSA) is 90.3 percent of the national average ̶  nearly ten points below the rest of the nation.  The Shreveport-Bossier City MSA is 93.8 percent of the national average. 
    The Cost of Living Index published quarterly by the Council for Community and Economic Research (C2ER) estimates the amount of money needed to sustain a certain level of living, including basic expenses such as housing, food, health care, etc. It is based on more than 90,000 prices covering 60 different items collected from hundreds of participating communities. The Cost of Living Index measures regional cost differences in consumer goods and services. It's often used when comparing how expensive it is to live in one city versus another.
    “Our region’s low cost of living benefits families and businesses in North Louisiana,” said Scott Martinez, CEcD, President of North Louisiana Economic Partnership (NLEP). “Families can afford a better standard of living, while companies can hire the talent they need at competitive wages.”

    NLEP, an Accredited Economic Development Organization for 14 parishes in North Louisiana, gathers the pricing information for the Shreveport-Bossier City MSA. The University of Louisiana at Monroe Center for Business and Economic Research gathers the data for the Monroe MSA.  The information is compiled into a composite index, which is based on six weighted categories – grocery items (13.40%), housing (29.34%), utilities (8.94%), transportation (9.22%), health care (4.26% ); and miscellaneous goods and services (34.84%).

    The Monroe MSA includes all of Ouachita and Union Parishes. For the Monroe MSA, the two most affordable cost categories are utilities at 82.1% and miscellaneous goods and services at 89.4% of the national average. The next lowest cost categories are housing (89.8%); transportation (90.7% ); health care (95.4%); and grocery items (97.1%).
    The Shreveport-Bossier City MSA includes all of Caddo, Bossier, De Soto and Webster Parishes. For the Shreveport-Bossier City MSA, the two lowest cost categories are housing at 84.9% and utilities at 85.8% of the national average. The next lowest cost categories are transportation (93.6%); miscellaneous goods and services (99.2%); grocery items (102.0%); and health care (102.9%).
    To see how North Louisiana’s cost of living compares with other communities around the nation, NLEP offers a Cost of Living calculator on our website,  Go to the Regional Data Center and click Cost of Living.  The calculator allows you to determine the level of income you would need to move to Shreveport or Monroe from another community and maintain your current standard of living based on the Cost of Living Index.  The following chart shows how North Louisiana compares with other competitor communities.


    About North Louisiana Economic Partnership

    North Louisiana Economic Partnership, an Accredited Economic Development Organization, provides professional economic development services to the 14 parish region of North Louisiana, including lead generation and prospect management. The organization also represents the interests of North Louisiana with a unified voice and as a single point of contact. It acts as a catalyst, a convener, and a connector in the region to ensure that North Louisiana’s economic development potential is realized. Its vision is for North Louisiana to be a thriving region-a destination for high quality talent, innovative companies, and global investment.
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