Dutch inflation was 2.2 percent in February, 0.2 of a percentage point more than in January. The increase was almost entirely caused by higher prices for clothes and an increase in the road tax rate. For the first time since the summer of 2003 inflation topped 2 percent. Inflation is calculated as the increase of the consumer price index (CPI) compared with the same month in the previous year.
The increase in the costs of transport contributed 0.6 of a percentage point to February’s inflation. Higher prices for food, drinks and tobacco contributed 0.5 of a percentage point. The sector hotels and restaurants added another 0.2 of a percentage point. On the other hand, prices of communication services and of recreation and culture had a downward effect on inflation in February, respectively 0.2 and 0.1 of a percentage point.
The harmonised consumer price index (HICP) allows comparison between the member states of the European Union. Dutch inflation calculated according to this method was 2.0 percent in February. This also is 0.2 of a percentage point more than in January. Dutch inflation was considerably lower than the average for the eurozone. According to Eurostat, the statistical bureau of the EU, eurozone inflation was unaltered and stood at 3.2 percent in February.