Decrease in the consumption of goods
Wholesale and retail trade and service activities;Income and consumption;National accounts and business cycles
vki, Index of household consumption of goods, volume index, household consumption (for example car purchase, food consumption, electricity consumption)Wholesale and retail trade , Consumption, National accounts , Income and consumption, National accounts and business cycles, Wholesale and retail trade and service activities

Index of household consumption of goodsApril 2006



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Decrease in the consumption of goods

According to the seasonally adjusted volume index of commodity consumption, the consumption of goods was 0.6 per cent lower in April 2006 than in the previous month. All commodity groups experienced a decrease, but the consumption is still higher than January and February this year.

The consumption bundle “other goods” decreased by 0.4 per cent from the previous month, according to the seasonally adjusted figures. This was mainly due to the consumption of furniture and white goods, and the consumption other household goods.

The sale of tobacco decreased by 11 per cent this month. It is difficult to conclude from this figures. The Easter holidays fell in April this year, and one can think that several households bought their tobacco abroad. This consumption is not covered by the Index of commodity consumption.

There was a decrease in consumption of groceries of 0.3 per cent, while the consumption of alcohol increased by 3.4 per cent. The high alcohol consumption could be related to the good weather during the Easter holidays.

The consumption of electricity and heating decreased by approximately 0.4 per cent from March to April. The consumption of heating fuels went up by approximately 11 per cent while the consumption of electricity decreased by 2 per cent. This could be seen in the light of the development in prices. The price of electricity increased this month, while the price on other heating was unchanged.

The consumption of vehicles and petrol decreased by 0.4 per cent from March to April. Purchase of vehicles decreased by decreased by 1.2 per cent, while consumption of petrol increased by 0.9 per cent

Note that because of difficulties related to the seasonally adjustment concerning Easters effect on trade, the indexes of March and April are somewhat more uncertain than other months.

The unadjusted volume index of commodity consumption was 3.4 per cent lower in April 2006 than in April 2005. It is mainly consumption of “other goods” and cars that contributed to this reduction, whiles high consumption of electricity pulled the index upwards.

Method differs from the index of retail sale

The index of commodity consumption describes the development in household consumption of goods, while the index of retail sales measures the development in retail sales. As opposed to the index of retail sales, the index of commodity consumption includes goods that are not sold in retail trade. Thus, the calculation of the index of commodity consumption is based on information from the index of retail sales in addition to information on purchases of cars, sales of petrol and oil to petrol stations and the consumption of electricity unadjusted for changes in temperature. This may result in deviations in the development of the two indices.

The index of commodity consumption uses the same definitions and methods of compilation as the quarterly national accounts, and thus serves as an indicator of household consumption of goods in the quarterly national accounts.

Timeliness is important in the release of statistics, and the index of commodity consumption may therefore have to rely on preliminary estimates in some cases. Such estimates are replaced in the subsequent release. This applies, inter alia, to figures on electricity consumption, where short-term statistics from the Norwegian Water Resources and Energy Directorate (NVE) are used. Later on these short-term statistics are replaced by electricity statistics from Statistics Norway. This implies that the index of commodity consumption normally will be revised in the subsequent publishing.

Index of commodity consumption, April 2006. Sesonally adjusted
and unadjusted volume index. April 2005-April 2006. 1995=1001
Period Seasonally adjusted Change from previous
month. Per cent
Unadjusted Change from same
month last year. Per cent
April  141.4 7.1  133.2 5.6
May  137.8 -2.6  131.4 4.3
June  139.2 1.0  142.9 2.6
July  139.9 0.5  139.1 3.1
August  140.0 0.1  141.9 5.8
September  139.0 -0.8  133.7 3.0
October  137.5 -1.1  134.2 0.5
November  138.2 0.5  141.3 1.5
December  140.6 1.8  186.0 0.7
January  140.2 -0.3  132.9 5.7
February  139.9 -0.2  121.2 1.5
March  141.2 0.9  140.6 7.7
April  140.3 -0.6  128.6 -3.4
1  Please note that the indices have been revised.