Insee conjoncture

Household consumption expenditure on goods was virtually stable in March 2018 (+0.1%) and unchanged over the first quarter (0.0%)Household consumption expenditure on goods - March 2018

In March 2018, househoulds expenditure on goods was virtually stable (+0.1%) in volume*. Tobacco aside, food consumption increased strongly, as well as durables purchases. However, energy and textile-clothing's consumption decreased.

Over the whole quarter, expenditure on goods was stable (0.0%), like in the previous quarter. The increase in spending on energy and textile-clothing was offset by lower spending on other goods, in particular food products.

Informations rapides N° 112
No 112
Principaux indicateurs
Paru le : 27/04/2018
Prochaine parution le : 29/08/2018 at 08:45 - July 2018

In March 2018, househoulds expenditure on goods was virtually stable (+0.1%) in volume*. Tobacco aside, food consumption increased strongly, as well as durables purchases. However, energy and textile-clothing's consumption decreased.

Over the whole quarter, expenditure on goods was stable (0.0%), like in the previous quarter. The increase in spending on energy and textile-clothing was offset by lower spending on other goods, in particular food products.

*Volumes are measured at chain-link previous year prices (2010 euro billions) and all figures are trading-day and seasonally adjusted.

Graph1 – Total consumption of goods

  • Source: INSEE

Engineered goods: increase in March, slight decrease over the quarter

In March 2018, expenditure on engineered goods increased again (+0.7% after +0.8%). Over the quarter, it decreased slightly (−0.2% after −0.1%).

Durables: acceleration in March, downturn over the quarter

In March, consumption of durables accelerated (+1.8% after +0.5%). Households durables purchases increased again (in particular furnitures), as transport equipment purchases, thanks to the recovery of the second-hand car market. Over the quarter, expenses on durables declined (−0.4% after +0.7%).

Textile-clothing: downturn in March, slight recovery over the quarter

After boucing back in February, expenses on textile-clothing decreased again in March (−1.6% after +2.8%). This fall affected the whole sector (clothing, textile and shoes). Over the quarter, consumption recovered slightly (+0.4% after −2.0%).

Other engineered goods: recovery in March, further decline over the quarter

Purchases of “other engineered goods” increased again in March (+0.5%), after three consecutive months of decline. Consumption of perfume and of DIY items were particularly dynamic. However, over the whole quarter, expenses on "other engineered goods” declined again (−0.4 % after −0.2%).

Graph2 – Breakdown of engineered goods

  • Source: INSEE

Food products: slowdown in March, downturn over the quarter

In March 2018, food consumption slowed down (+0.2% after +1.2%). This slowdown comes entirely from the fall in tobacco consumption, whose price has increased strongly on March, 1st: in fact, excluding tobacco, food purchases remained dynamic (+1.4% after +1.2%). Over the quarter, food consumption decreased (−0.5% after +0.3%), even after excluding tobacco (−0.1% after +0.6%).

Graph3 – Food products, engineered goods and energy

  • Source: INSEE

Energy: decrease in March, increase over the quarter

In March 2018, energy consumption decreased slightly, after a strong rise in February (−1.6 % after +9.9%). Heating purpose expenses decreased: March's temperatures were lower than the seasonal norm, but less dramatically than in February. Over the quarter, energy consumption bounced back (+1,4 % after 0,6%), whether in gas-electricity or in refined products.

Graph4 – Breakdown of energy

  • Source: INSEE

The variation in Februrary 2018 is revised upwards

Compared to the previous estimation, the change of household expenditure on goods in February 2018 was revised upwards: +2.5% instead of +2.4%. Indeed, new information has been integrated and the seasonal adjustment coefficients have been updated.

Table – Household consumption expenditure on goods

Changes in %, TD-SA
Household consumption expenditure on goods
Weight (1) Jan. 2018 Feb. 2018 Mar. 2018 Mar. 18 / Mar. 17 Q1 18 / Q4 17
Food products 38 –0.8 1.2 0.2 0.4 –0.5
- excl. Tobacco 35 –1.0 1.2 1.4 2.0 –0.1
Engineered goods 44 –0.9 0.8 0.7 1.2 –0.2
- Durables 22 –1.1 0.5 1.8 3.4 –0.4
Including : 0.0 0.0 0.0 0.0 0.0
- Transport equipment 12 –2.7 1.5 1.3 3.6 –0.3
- Household durables 7 1.3 –0.5 2.5 3.6 –0.5
- Textile-clothing 9 –1.5 2.8 –1.6 –2.2 0.4
- Other engineered goods 13 –0.3 –0.2 0.5 0.0 –0.4
Energy 18 –7.0 9.9 –1.6 9.9 1.4
- Energy, water, waste 10 –9.7 17.3 –3.3 16.2 2.0
- Refined Products 8 –3.5 1.2 0.7 2.3 0.6
Total 100 –2.0 2.5 0.1 2.3 0.0
- Including Manufactured goods 84 –1.1 1.0 0.4 1.0 –0.2
  • (1) Weighting in the consumption expenditure on goods in value in 2016