Dutch households spent 3.5 percent more in May 2006 than in May 2005. Consumption has been growing since mid-2005. The increase has accelerated in recent months. Consumption growth in May 2006 is mostly due to spending on durable goods. The figures have been corrected for price changes and differences in shopping day patterns.
Households spent 11.1 percent more on durable goods in May 2006. Clothes and shoes in particular were popular among consumers. Home furnishing, consumer electronics and cars were in demand as well. Consumer spending on food, drinks and tobacco was 3.6 percent above the level of May 2005. Spending on sundry services grew by 1.2 percent compared to twelve months ago.
Retail shopping accounted for about one third of domestic consumer expenditure. Compared to May 2005, retail trade was doing very well. After correction for shopping day patterns, retail turnover rose by approximately 10 percent.
The introduction of the new health care system in January 2006 had consequences for consumption figures. They had to be revised: monthly figures in 2006 are exclusive of health care. For more information, the reader is referred to the Focus article The effect of the new health insurance system on the key economic indicators published on 24 March 2006.
Domestic household consumption (volume)