:note.The description relates to the territory of the Federal Republic
of Germany before 3.10.1990.
Preisindex für die Lebenshaltung aller privaten Haushalte
(Consumer Price Index for All Private Households).
The index is computed monthly and covers all private households
of German residents, excluding institutional households.
1985 = 100.
Source of weights
The weights and selected items were derived from a household
expenditure survey conducted in 1983, covering about
55,000 private households with one or more members and with a net
monthly income of up to 25,000 marks. The weights were updated to
1985 on the basis of the current budget survey of about 1,000
selected private households. The index relates to an average
household size of 2.3 persons and an average household
consumption expenditure of 3,105 marks per month in 1985. The
weights of items not priced were allocated to the other items.
Weights and composition
||Number of items
||Approximate number of price quotations
|Food and tobacco
|Clothing and footwear
|Fuel and light
|Furniture, furnishings and other household items
|Transport and communication
|Personal and medical care
|Education and entertainment
|Other goods and services
Household consumption expenditure
Household consumption expenditure used for deriving the
weights includes home ownership, licence fees, insurance
associated with specific consumer goods, gifts and similar
disbursements. Private contributions to life, social and old-age
insurance are excluded. Also excluded are income in kind, credit
purchases, second-hand purchases, income taxes and other direct taxes.
Method of data collection
Prices are collected by agents around the middle of each month in
118 municipalities and about 15,000 retail outlets and service
Prices applying uniformly to the whole country (&eg prices for
books and magazines, postal fees, air tariffs, prices of
inclusive tours, insurance premiums) are determined centrally at
regular intervals or according to the dates of change. The prices
used to calculate the index are the retail prices actually
paid by consumers (not list prices), including value-added tax
and excise duties (&eg mineral oil tax, tobacco tax) and other
statutory charges (&eg equalisation charges for electric power,
storage contribution for mineral oil products). Discount prices
are collected only if items correspond to regular items. No
sale prices are used.
Rent quotations are obtained each quarter from all dwellings
included in the sample (11,000 dwellings). In order to show
monthly changes, however, every month one third of the dwellings
(about 3,700) is included in the index.
Owner-occupied housing is taken into account in the weights.
Its price movement is represented by the rent of rented
Specification of varieties
The descriptions of the individual goods and services included in the
survey are so extensive that, in each reporting unit, the varieties of
goods which account for the greatest part of turnover can be selected
for the reporting unit. The price collector records the exact
descriptions of the varieties (brand, article, number, quantity, etc.)
for each of the individual goods and services so that it is possible to
check and ensure comparability over time.
Substitution, quality change, etc.
If there is a change of price-determining characteristics, calculations
or estimates are made in consultation with the relevant experts in order
to eliminate any non-genuine price changes. A change from one item to
another is carried out when the old item is still important on the
market and the new one already has sufficient market importance; in this
case, a procedure that simply links the old price series to the new one
Seasonal items available on the market for a short period only
are not included in the index. Prices for items available during
the whole year are taken into account in their full amount.
The index is computed according to the Laspeyres formula as a
weighted arithmetic average with fixed base, using weights
corresponding to the base period.
Unweighted average prices are first calculated for each municipality
Land. The average of price relatives for the current
and base periods are used to compute item indices. Indices for the
eleven Länder are then weighted according to the population in each
Land and combined to obtain the index for the whole country.
Separate series are calculated for:
- four-person households of civil servants and salaried employees
with high incomes;
- four-person households of wage earners and salaried employees
with middle incomes;
- two-person households of pensioners and social assistance
beneficiaries with low incomes;
- a child under 18.
Organisation and publication
Wirtschaft und Statistik (Wiesbaden).
Eilbericht und Monatsbericht der Fachserie 17, Reihe
7, Preise und Preisindizes für die Lebenshaltung.
Wirtschaft un Statistik (Nos 7/84 and 1/90) for
further methodological details.