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News Release Information

14-1951-ATL
Thursday, December 04, 2014

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Consumer Expenditures for the Miami Area: 2012-2013

Consumer units in the Miami-Fort Lauderdale-Pompano Beach, Fla., metropolitan area spent an average of $40,604 per year in 2012-2013, the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics reported today. Regional Commissioner Janet S. Rankin noted that this figure was about 21 percent lower than the $51,299 average expenditure level for a typical household in the United States. Not only did households in the Miami area spend less than the U.S. average, they also allocated their dollars differently in four of the eight major categories. For example, the expenditure for healthcare, which accounted for 5.4 percent of a typical Miami household budget, was significantly less than the national average of 7.0 percent. (See chart 1 and table 1.)

Housing in the Miami metropolitan area averaged $16,212 annually and was the largest expenditure category, accounting for 39.9 percent of a Miami area household’s total budget; significantly higher than the national average of 33.2 percent. (See tables 1 and 2.) Overall, 8 of the 18 published metropolitan areas had expenditure shares for housing significantly above the U.S. average. Only one area, Detroit, had a share for housing that was significantly below the U.S. average. (See chart 2.)  At 39.9 percent, Miami had the highest expenditure share for housing among the 18 areas; Detroit had the lowest share at 30.0 percent. (See table 3.)

The majority of housing expenditures in Miami went toward shelter, 67.7 percent, which includes mortgage interest, property taxes, repairs, and rent, among other items; nationwide, 58.6 percent of the housing budget was allocated for shelter. (See table A.) Utilities, fuels, and public services expenses accounted for 19.9 percent of the housing budget locally; nationally, it made up 21.7 percent. The rate of home ownership in Miami was 57 percent, compared to the U.S. average of 64 percent.

Table A. Percent distribution of housing expenditures, United States and Miami, 2012-2013
CategoryUnited StatesMiami

Total housing

100.0100.0

Shelter

58.667.7

Utilities, fuels, and public services

21.719.9

Household operations

6.84.3

Housekeeping supplies

3.73.6

Household furnishings and equipment

9.24.5

Note: Columns may not add to 100 due to rounding.

At 16.2 percent of the total budget, transportation was the second largest expenditure category in the Miami area, not significantly different than the national average of 17.5 percent. Among the 18 metropolitan areas nationwide, 6 had below average transportation expenditure shares. Two areas had transportation shares that were measurably above the U.S. average. (See chart 3.)

Of the $6,573 in annual expenditures for transportation in Miami, 94.1 percent was spent buying and maintaining private vehicles; this was similar to the national average of 94.0 percent. The remaining 5.9 percent of a Miami household’s transportation budget was spent on public transit, which includes fares for taxis, buses, trains, and planes; this allocation was similar to the 6.0-percent national average. (See table B.) The average number of vehicles per household in Miami was 1.3 and the national average was 1.9.

Table B. Percent distribution of transportation expenditures, United States and Miami, 2012-2013
CategoryUnited StatesMiami

Transportation

100.0100.0

Vehicle purchases (net outlay)

36.016.6

Gasoline and motor oil

29.839.0

Other vehicle expenses

28.238.5

Public transportation

6.05.9

Note: Columns may not add to 100 due to rounding.

The portion of a Miami consumer unit’s budget spent on food, 14.0 percent, was not significantly different than the U.S. average. Among the 18 metropolitan areas, 12 had food expenditure shares that were not measurably different from the nationwide average. (See table 3.)

Households in Miami spent $3,479, or 61.1 percent, of their food dollars on food at home and the remaining 38.9 percent ($2,216) on food prepared away from home, such as restaurant meals, carry-out, board at school, and catered affairs. In comparison, the typical U.S. household spent 59.8 percent of its food budget on food at home and 40.2 percent on food away from home.

As noted, Miami is 1 of 18 metropolitan areas nationwide for which Consumer Expenditure Survey (CE) data are available. Metropolitan area CE data and that for the four geographic regions of the United States are available on our Web site at https://www.bls.gov/cex/tables.htm. Metropolitan area CE news releases are available at https://www.bls.gov/regions/subjects/consumer-spending.htm.

Additional Information

Data contained in this report are from the CE, which is collected on an ongoing basis by the U.S. Census Bureau for the BLS. The CE data were averaged over a two-year period, 2012 and 2013. CE data are available for the nation, the 4 geographic regions of the country, and 18 metropolitan areas. The metropolitan area discussed in this release is Miami-Fort Lauderdale-Pompano Beach, Fla., which is comprised of Broward and Miami-Dade Counties in Florida.

The survey consists of two components, a diary or recordkeeping survey, and an interview survey. The integrated data from the BLS Diary and Interview Surveys provide a complete accounting of consumer expenditures and income, which neither survey component alone is designed to do. Due to changes in the survey sample frame, metropolitan area data in this release are not directly comparable to those prior to 1996.

A consumer unit is defined as members of a household related by blood, marriage, adoption, or other legal arrangement; a single person living alone or sharing a household with others but who is financially independent; or two or more persons living together who share responsibility for at least 2 out of 3 major types of expenses – food, housing, and other expenses. The terms household or consumer unit are used interchangeably for convenience.

CE metropolitan area estimates are not comparative cost of living surveys, as neither the quantity nor the quality of goods and services has been held constant among areas. Differences may result from variations in demographic characteristics such as consumer unit size, age, preferences, income levels, etc. However, expenditure shares, or the percentage of a consumer unit’s budget spent on a particular category, can be used to compare spending patterns across areas. Sample sizes for the metropolitan areas are much smaller than for the nation, so the U.S. estimates and year-to-year changes are more reliable than those for the metropolitan areas. Users should also keep in mind that prices for many goods and services have changed since the survey was conducted.

Expenditure shares for housing and transportation that are above or below that for the nation after testing for significance at the 95-percent confidence interval are also identified in charts 2 and 3 for the 18 metropolitan areas surveyed.

A value that is statistically different from another does not necessarily mean that the difference has economic or practical significance. Statistical significance is concerned with our ability to make confident statements about a universe based on a sample. It is entirely possible that a large difference between two values is not significantly different statistically, while a small difference is, since both the size and heterogeneity of the sample affect the relative error of the data being tested.

For additional technical documentation and related information, see https://www.bls.gov/opub/hom/homch16.htm.

Information in this release will be made available to sensory impaired individuals upon request. Voice phone: 202-6915200. Federal Relay Service: 800-877-8339.

Table 1. Percent distribution of average annual expenditures, United States and Miami, Consumer Expenditure Survey, 2012-13
CategoryUnited StatesMiami

Average annual expenditures

$51,299$40,604

Percent distribution:

100.0100.0

Food

12.914.0

Alcoholic beverages

0.90.7*

Housing

33.239.9*

Apparel and services

3.33.0

Transportation

17.516.2

Healthcare

7.05.4*

Entertainment

5.03.3*

Personal care products and services

1.21.6

Reading

0.20.1*

Education

2.31.4*

Tobacco products and smoking supplies

0.60.4*

Miscellaneous

1.41.1

Cash contributions

3.71.1*

Personal insurance and pensions

10.811.7

Note: An asterisk (*) represents a statistically significant difference from the U.S. average at the 95-percent confidence level. Columns may not add to 100 due to rounding.

Table 2. Consumer unit characteristics and average annual expenditures, United States and Miami, Consumer Expenditure Survey, 2012-2013
CategoryUnited StatesMiami

Consumer unit characteristics:

 

Income before taxes

$64,686$56,094

Age of reference person

50.151.3

Average number in consumer unit:

 

Persons

2.52.5

Children under 18

0.60.6

Persons 65 and over

0.30.3

Earners

1.31.2

Vehicles

1.91.3

Percent homeowners

6457

Average annual expenditures:

 

Average annual expenditures

$51,299$40,604

Food

6,6005,695

Food at home

3,9493,479

Cereals and bakery products

541498

Meats, poultry, fish, and eggs

854931

Dairy products

416363

Fruits and vegetables

741709

Other food at home

1,397977

Food away from home

2,6512,216

Alcoholic beverages

448264

Housing

17,03016,212

Shelter

9,98610,983

Owned dwellings

6,0825,838

Rented dwellings

3,2554,631

Other lodging

649515

Utilities, fuels, and public services

3,6933,219

Household operations

1,152700

Housekeeping supplies

627578

Household furnishings and equipment

1,571732

Apparel and services

1,6771,219

Transportation

9,0016,573

Vehicle purchases (net outlay)

3,2411,089

Gasoline and motor oil

2,6832,562

Other vehicle expenses

2,5372,533

Public transportation

540389

Healthcare

3,5942,204

Entertainment

2,5531,352

Personal care products and services

618666

Reading

10648

Education

1,172586

Tobacco products and smoking supplies

331162

Miscellaneous

736446

Cash contributions

1,873446

Personal insurance and pensions

5,5594,731

Life and other personal insurance

336270

Pensions and Social Security

5,2244,461
Table 3. Percent share of average annual expenditures for housing, transportation, and food, United States and 18 metropolitan areas, Consumer Expenditure Survey, 2012-2013
AreaHousingTransportationFood

United States

33.217.512.9

Atlanta

33.417.112.6

Baltimore

32.515.511.0*

Boston

32.615.6*13.3

Chicago

35.4*15.6*12.7

Cleveland

31.618.212.8

Dallas

33.517.912.6

Detroit

30.0*19.7*13.5

Houston

33.121.0*12.0

Los Angeles

38.2*15.4*13.4

Miami

39.9*16.214.0

Minneapolis

32.018.311.3*

New York

39.8*13.5*11.9*

Philadelphia

35.4*15.4*13.7

Phoenix

34.818.913.6

San Diego

38.2*15.811.5*

San Francisco

35.8*13.7*11.9*

Seattle

33.415.613.0

Washington

35.3*16.710.9*

Note: An asterisk (*) represents a statistically significant difference from the U.S. average at the 95-percent confidence level.

 

Last Modified Date: Thursday, December 04, 2014