Inflation rate marginally up

Dutch inflation stood at 2.5 percent in January 2012, i.e. 0.1 percentage points up on December 2011.The marginal increase is mainly due to changes in petrol, natural gas and electricity prices. Inflation is defined as the increase in the consumer price index (CPI) in a particular month compared to the same month in the previous year.

Housing, energy and water and transport costs contributed 0.7 and 0.4 percent respectively to  January’s inflation rate of 2.5 percent. Food products and non-alcoholic drinks accounted for 0.3 percentage points. Alcoholic drinks and tobacco accounted for 0.2 percentage points, just as consumption abroad. Other goods and services also contributed to inflation, though to a lesser extent.

The harmonised consumer price index (HICP) allows comparison between the inflation rates in the various member states of the European Union. According to the HICP method, the Dutch inflation rate in January was 2.9 percent, i.e. 0.4 percentage points above the December level. Dutch inflation according to the HICP rises more rapidly than Dutch inflation according to the CPI due to a different composition of the basket of goods and services. A higher private contribution for child care and a more limited basic health insurance coverage had an upward effect on HICP, but not on the CPI.

Eurostat, the European statistical office, calculated an inflation rate of 2.6 percent in the eurozone for January, i.e. 0.1 percentage points down on December. The level of inflation in the eurozone is one of the main guidelines for the European Central Bank (ECB) to change or refrain from changing the interest rate. According to the ECB, prices in the eurozone are stable, if the inflation rate is close to 2 percent.

Dutch inflation rate

Dutch inflation rate

More figures can be found in the Business cycle dossier.

For more information on Dutch inflation, see Statistics Netherlands’ online video on YouTube.