Dutch manufactured products were 13 percent cheaper in May 2009 than in May 2008. In April, prices dropped by 12 percent. In mid-2008, factory gate prices were still about 12 percent up on one year previously. Subsequently, price increases slowed down rapidly in a relatively short period. Since November 2008, manufactured products have been cheaper than twelve months previously.
Prices of products in the petroleum processing and refining industry in particular were lower in May. This sector charged nearly 44 percent less for its products. Price developments in this sector are seriously affected by the price of crude oil. The euro price of a barrel of North Sea Brent oil was nearly 47 percent lower than in May 2008.
Products manufactured by the chemical and basic metal industry also were considerably cheaper than in May 2008. Prices dropped by 22 and 12 percent respectively. Factory gate prices in the food processing industry were 7 percent down and prices in paper manufacturing 6 percent. Prices were higher than twelve months previously in a number of branches, though: production of beverages, tobacco products, building materials, among others.
Factory gate prices were just over 1 percent higher in May than in April. This increase was largely accounted for by price rises in petroleum processing as well as in the chemical industry. The increase on the domestic market virtually equalled the price rise on the export market. In the past nine months, prices have been consistently lower than in the previous month.
Factory gate prices