The third optional field of the format specification is the precision specification. It specifies a nonnegative decimal integer, preceded by a period (.), which specifies the number of decimal places, or the number of significant digits. Unlike the width specification, the precision specification can cause either truncation of the output value or rounding of a floating-point value.

The precision value specifies the number of digits after the decimal point. If a decimal point appears, at least one digit appears before it. The value is rounded to the appropriate number of digits. Default precision is 6; if precision is 0, or if the period (.) appears without a number following it, no decimal point is printed.