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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.

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