The new consumer price index, a better tool to measure inflation
Statistics Belgium will publish the 'new' consumer price index for the first time on 30 January 2014. The index is calculated according to a new method and has 2013=100 as reference period.
The methodological improvements should guarantee that the consumer price index still calculates the inflation accurately. The reform is based on scientifically proven methods, on reliable sources (household budget survey, INAMI, population figures) and is consistent with international recommendations on correct measurement of inflation. It is therefore broadly compliant with the method recommended by Eurostat, the statistical office of the European Union.
At the end of last year, the Index Commission delivered unanimously a positive opinion on this method to Minister Johan Vande Lanotte. The Minister has just given its approval to all proposed methodological changes . The Index Commission is made up, on an equal footing, of employers and trade union organisations, on the one hand, and of academics, on the other hand. This Commission provides advice to the Minister of Economy on all issues related to the consumer price index and gives a monthly opinion on the index calculated by Statistics Belgium.
The main changes relate to:
- A new index basket ;
- A new calculation method ;
- A number of improvements to some product categories