Consumption rising

Household in the Netherlands spent substantially more on goods and services in June 2006 than they did in June 2005, as domestic consumption rose by 2.4 percent. The figures have been corrected for price changes and differences in shopping day patterns.

Household spending on durable goods increased by 5.8 percent. Consumer spending on food, drinks and tobacco was up by 2.6 on June 2005, while expenditure on services grew by 1.2 percent.

Consumption expenditure grew robustly in the first six months of 2006, with Dutch households spending just under 3 percent more than in the first six months of 2005. In previous years, consumption was restrained by the deteriorating financial position households faced. By 2005 their real disposable income had dropped for the fourth year in a row.

Sentiments nevertheless improved from September 2005 on, according to the consumer confidence survey. This was followed by a robust improvement in consumption in the first six months of 2006. Together with exports and investments, consumption contributes positively to Dutch economic growth.

The consumption figures are influenced by the new health care system, introduced in January 2006.They had to be revised: the monthly figures in 2006 are exclusive of health care.

More information can be found in 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)

Domestic household consumption (volume)