Inflation in the Netherlands was 0.8 percent in March 2014, as against 1.1 percent in February. In March, the lowest level in nearly four years was reached. 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.
The decrease from February to March was mainly caused by price developments for tobacco products. Clothing prices and prices for identity documents also had a downward effect on inflation.
Dutch inflation rate
The harmonised consumer price index (HICP) allows comparison between the inflation rates in the various member states of the European Union (EU). 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.
The inflation rate in the Netherlands, calculated according to the HICP method has fallen considerably since the summer of 2013. In March, the rate stood at 0.1 percent, the lowest level recorded after September 2009. In March, Eurostat, the European statistical office, calculated an inflation rate for the eurozone of 0.5 percent.
Dutch inflation according to HICP
More figures can be found in the Business cycle dossier.For more information on economic indicators, see the Economic Monitor.