Consumption figures have been adjusted for year-on-year price changes and differences in the shopping-day pattern.
|Year||Month||Change (year-on-year % change)|
Spending on services and durable goods down in particular
In March, consumers spent 11.8 percent less on services than one year previously. Services include visits to restaurants, hairdressers, theatres, amusement parks, gyms and soccer matches as well as public transportation and house rent. Spending on most services slumped, but on housing it rose slightly. Consumer spending on durable goods plunged by 7.2 percent year-on-year. Purchases of clothes, shoes and passenger cars were down in particular. However, households spent more on electrical appliances than in March 2019.
Spending on food, beverages and tobacco was 9.1 percent up on March 2019. This is the largest increase in this type of spending ever recorded. Households spent 1.5 percent less on other goods, such as natural gas and motor fuels. Energy and water consumption was up, whereas consumption of motor fuels nosedived.
Last week, CBS reported that the Dutch retail sector achieved 3.5 percent year-on-year turnover growth in March 2020. The volume of sales increased by 2 percent. Turnover realised by the food sector increased, while turnover in the non-food sector decreased. These figures were also adjusted for the shopping-day pattern.
|change (year-on-year % change)|
|Food, drinks and tobacco||9.1|
|Other goods (e.g. gas)||-1.5|
CBS has never recorded a decline in household consumption of this magnitude. CBS has published figures on household consumption since 1922, with the exception of the years 1940-1948. The current monthly time series has been available as of 2000. Data over previous years are quarterly and/or annual data. Data over the years prior to 1995 were not compiled in accordance with the European System of Accounts 2010 (ESA 2010), the current European standard for the national accounts. Furthermore, for the period prior to 1969, only data on national household consumption are available. National household consumption data are different from domestic household consumption data as the former refers to expenditure of Dutch consumers both in the Netherlands and abroad while domestic household consumption refers to consumer spending by both Dutch and foreign people within the Netherlands.