Household consumption over 3 percent up

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According to figures released by Statistics Netherlands (CBS), Dutch household consumption was 3.1 percent up in September 2017 over September 2016. This is the highest growth rate since February this year. Consumers mainly spent more on clothing, shoes and home furnishing articles.

The CBS Consumption Radar shows that circumstances for Dutch household consumption are more favourable in November than in September.

Consumption figures are adjusted for price changes and differences in the shopping-day pattern.

Dutch consumers spend more on clothing and home furnishing

In September, Dutch consumers spent over 9 percent more on durable goods such as clothing and home furnishing articles. Consumer spending on food, beverages and tobacco products was slightly down from one year previously. Furthermore, consumers spent over 5 percent more on the category ‘other goods’. For example, consumers spent more on natural gas than in September last year, due to the weather.

Last week, CBS already reported that - adjusted for the shopping-day pattern - retail turnover was almost 6 percent up in September year-on-year. The volume of sales grew by over 4 percent. This number was also adjusted for the shopping-day pattern.

Household spending on services - accounting for over half of total domestic consumer spending - rose by over 2 percent compared to September 2016. These services include house rent, public transport, visits to restaurants or hairdressers and insurance premiums.

Domestic household consumption by category (volume, adjusted for shopping-days), September 2017
 % change
Durable consumer goods9.1
Other goods (e.g. gas)5.4
Food; drinks and tobacco-1.2

Consumer climate in November more favourable than in September

CBS publishes figures about circumstances for household consumption on a monthly basis. Household consumption is affected by consumers’ expectations, their personal financial situation and developments on the labour market. Although the Radar indicators show a strong correlation with household consumption, improved circumstances are not necessarily translated into increased growth.

According to the Consumption Radar, circumstances for Dutch household consumption are more favourable in November compared to September. For example, the year-on-year rise in share prices was more substantial.

The figures presented in this news release are provisional and can be adjusted.