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GERMANY – Coffee, tea and cocoa prices down 4.3% in April

WIESBADEN – Consumer prices in Germany rose by 1.3% in April 2014 compared with April 2013. This was the first slight increase in the inflation rate observed this year.

Between January and March 2014, the Inflation rate – as measured by the consumer price index – had continuously declined. Compared with March 2014, the consumer price index fell by 0.2 % in April 2014. The Federal Statistical Office (Destatis) thus confirms its provisional results of 29 April 2014.

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The increase in the inflation rate in April 2014 was mainly due to the development of package holiday prices (+10.4% on April 2013). Here the fact that Easter was later this year (mid-April 2014) compared with the previous year (29 March to 1 April 2013) played a decisive role.

The development of energy prices as a whole had a downward effect on the overall rise in prices. Compared with a year earlier, energy prices were down 1.3%. Above all, prices continued to be down for mineral oil products (−3.5%; including heating oil: −3.7%; motor fuels: −3.4%).

Electricity prices were the only prices to increase on a year earlier (+1.8%). Not considering the prices of energy the rate of price increase would have been much higher (+1.7%).

Year-on-year food prices were up 1.8%. As in the previous month, the rise in prices continued its downward trend in April 2014 (March 2014: +2.2% on March 2013).

The prices of dairy products (+11.1%, including curd: +19.4%; UHT milk: +13.0%; sliced cheese: +13.0%; yoghurt: +8.8%) were much higher than a year earlier. Prices were also up for edible fats and oils (+3.9%, including butter: +11.3%), fruit (+2.9%) and fish and fish products (+2.2%).

Marked price decreases were however observed for vegetables (−3.9%, including peppers: −22.9%; cucumbers: −10.8%; tomatoes: −4.6%). Consumers also paid less for eggs (−7.2%).

Compared with the overall inflation rate, the prices of goods recorded a below-average increase (+0.5%) on April 2013. In addition to food prices, prices were up especially for beer (+3.8%), tobacco products (+4.5%) and newspapers and periodicals (+4.7%).

Like the prices of mineral oil products, prices declined for coffee, tea and cocoa (−4.3%, including unground coffee: −6.7%), information processing equipment (−5.4%, including portable computers: −10.9%), consumer electronics (−5.9%, including TV sets: −9.2%) and telephones (−9.9%).

Service prices saw an above-average rise of 2.3% compared with a year earlier. Marked price increases were recorded not only for package holidays but also for games of chance (+21.1%).

In addition, prices went up for hairdresser services (+4.1%), services of social facilities (+3.1%; including home care services: +6.6%), recreational and sporting services (+2.8%) and for net rents exclusive of heating expenses (+1.5%). The price development remained consumer-friendly for telecommunications services (−1.3%).

Change in April 2014 on March 2014

The consumer price index fell by 0.2 % in April 2014 from March 2014. Compared with the previous month, the prices of food and non-alcoholic beverages declined by 0.4%. Even more significant price decreases were observed for vegetables (−2.3%, including cucumbers: −22.1%; tomatoes: −7.5%). Consumers also had to pay less for coffee (−2.6%).

Energy prices rose by 0.7% within one month. Compared with the previous month, especially the prices for motor fuel (+1.6%, including supergrade petrol: +2.2%; diesel fuel: +0.3%) and heating oil (+0.8%) went up.

Source: Germany’s Federal Statistical Office