Consumer prices 1.5 percent up in November

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Statistics Netherlands (CBS) reports that the consumer price index (CPI) was 1.5 percent higher in November than in the same month last year. In October, prices of consumer goods and services were 1.3 percent up.

The consumer price index (CPI) is an important indicator for inflation, but is not the only one. It is an index for price changes in a basket of consumer goods and services, such as groceries, clothing, petrol, rent and insurance premiums. Inflation is a broader term which covers more than consumer goods and services; for example, prices of owner-occupied houses, manufactured products, shares and gold are also subject to change.

Petrol up in price

The year-on-year increase in consumer prices over November was higher than in October. This is mainly due to price developments of motor fuels and clothing.

The consumer price for a litre of petrol at the filling station was 1.59 euros in November 2017, the highest price level recorded in over two years. Compared to November 2016, the price increase was 5.6 percent, while in October 2017 the year-on-year price increase was 1.1 percent. Consumers paid 1.2 percent less for clothing in November than in the same month last year, but the year-on-year price decrease in October was higher.

CPI; major contributions to year-on-year change
 October 2017November 2017
Housing, water and
Food and non alcoholic
Recreatie en cultuur0.210.22
Restaurants and hotels0.210.17
Miscellaneous goods
and services
Consumption abroad0.10.07
Clothing and footwear-0.12-0.07

Rise in Dutch consumer prices equal to eurozone

In addition to the consumer price index (CPI), CBS also calculates the European harmonised price index (HICP).

HICP-based prices in the Netherlands increased from 1.3 percent in October to 1.5 percent in November. In the eurozone, the price increase of goods and services rose from 1.4 to 1.5 percent.

The HICP is compiled according to the European harmonised method in order to facilitate comparison between the various EU member states. Price indices for the eurozone and the European Union as a whole are calculated on the basis of the HICPs of the individual member states. The European Central Bank (ECB) uses these figures to formulate its monetary policy.

Unlike the CPI, the HICP does not take into account the costs related to home ownership. In the Dutch CPI, these costs are calculated on the basis of rent levels.