cost of living(redirected from costs of living)
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Cost of Living
The amount one must pay to maintain one's standard of living. That is, the cost of living measures how much one must spend to finance one's lifestyle. Cost of living varies by area; it may be lower in a small city, for example, than in a large city. Changes to the cost of living are related to, but are distinct from, underlying inflation. For example, gasoline prices may rise faster than inflation, which may increase the cost of living more than inflation itself does.
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cost of livingthe general level of prices of goods and services measured in terms of a PRICE INDEX. To protect people's living standards from being eroded by price increases (INFLATION), wage contracts and old-age pensions, etc., sometimes contain cost-of-living adjustment provisions that automatically operate to increase wages, pensions, etc., in proportion to price increases. See INDEXATION.
Collins Dictionary of Economics, 4th ed. © C. Pass, B. Lowes, L. Davies 2005