Consumer prices unchanged in May

In May this year, for the first time since the German reunification, consumer prices remained unchanged by annual comparison (0.0 % as compared to May 2008). On April this year consumer prices fell by 0.1%. According to the Federal Statistical Office, consumer prices are currently stabilizing after sharp drops over the past months.

Currently, prices for heating oil and fuels remained virtually unchanged on the previous month. Prices of fuels increased by between 0.2 % and 3.6 % in different Federal states and those of heating oil changed by between -0.7 % and + 1.2 %. As compared to May 2008, however, prices for mineral oil products were much lower in May this year (fuel: -16.1 % to -18.4 %; heating oil: -33.9 % to -43.9 %). Prices for natural gas fell by up to 1.1 % on April this year, but in comparison with May last year prices for natural gas were by 0.9 % and 6.2 % higher in May 2009.

Prices for foodstuffs changed by between -0.2 % and -1.0 % on April and by between -0.4 % and -2.1 % as compared to May 2008.

The so-called harmonized European consumer price index for Germany in May will probably change by -0.1 % on May 2008 (in April 2009: + 0.8 %). As compared to April 2009, this harmonized index decreased by 0.2 %. The above data for May 2009 are for the time being provisional ones calculated on the basis of data provided by six Federal German states. Final results will be known on June 10th. GERMAN