Household consumption nearly 1 percent up in January

© CBS / Nikki van Toorn
According to figures released by Statistics Netherlands (CBS), Dutch household consumption was 0.9 percent up in January 2019 on January 2018. This is the lowest growth rate since mid-2016. In January, consumers spent less on cars and more on natural gas than one year previously.

The CBS Consumption Radar shows that circumstances for Dutch household consumption in March are, on balance, slightly more favourable than in January.

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

Domestic household consumption (volume, adjusted for shopping days) (year-on-year % change)
Year MonthChange
2015February2
March2.1
April1.7
May1.3
June2.3
July1.5
August1.4
September2.2
October1.7
November0.8
December0.8
2016January0.7
February0.4
March1.1
April0.4
May1.9
June0.7
July2.4
August1.5
September1.1
October2.6
November2.8
December2.5
2017January3.4
February1.5
March1.7
April2.6
May2.5
June2.3
July2.2
August1.9
September2.6
October1.8
November2.4
December1.3
2018January1.9
February3
March3.2
April3.2
May2.1
June2.6
July2.9
August2.3
September2.2
October2.1
November2.4
December2.5
January0.9

Dutch households spend less on cars, more on natural gas

In January, consumers spent over 3 percent less on durable goods. Spending on cars was down in particular. In December, consumer spending on durable goods was still up. Spending on other goods, such as energy and fuel, was nearly 4 percent up in January year-on-year. Households consumed mainly more natural gas, because January 2019 was colder than January 2018. Consumers spent nearly 1 percent more on food, beverages and tobacco than one year previously.

Last week, CBS reported that retail turnover was nearly 2 percent up in January year-on-year. The volume of sales increased by nearly 1 percent. This figure was also adjusted for the shopping-day pattern.

Consumer spending on services - accounting for over half of total domestic consumer expenditure - rose by 1.7 percent in January 2019 year-on-year. These services include insurance premiums, house rent, public transportation and visits to restaurants or hairdressers.

Domestic household consumption by category (volume, adjusted for shopping days), January 2019 (year-on-year % change)
 change
Other goods (e.g. gas)3.8
Services1.7
Food, drinks and tobacco0.9
Durable consumer goods-3.3
Total0.9

Consumer climate in March more favourable than in January

CBS publishes figures about circumstances for household consumption on a monthly basis in the CBS Consumption Radar. 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 CBS Consumption Radar, circumstances for Dutch household consumption in March are more favourable than in January, mainly due to a higher year-on-year increase of share prices. Furthermore, manufacturers were more positive about future employment in their company.

The figures presented in this news release are provisional and subject for revision.

Sources

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