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[IWS] Eurostat: COMPARATIVE PRICE LEVELS OF CONSUMER GOODS AND SERVICES [11 December 2014]
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COMPARATIVE PRICE LEVELS OF CONSUMER GOODS AND SERVICES [11 December 2014]
Data from December 2014. Most recent data: Further Eurostat information, Main tables and Database.
This article presents the most recent analysis of price levels for consumer goods and services in the European Union (EU), focusing on price level indices (PLIs), which provide a comparison of countries' price levels relative to the EU average and are calculated using purchasing power parities.
The results are based on price surveys covering more than 2400 consumer goods and services and conducted across 37 European countries, being part of the Eurostat-OECD Purchasing Power Parities (PPP) program. The group of participating countries includes the 28 EU Member States, three EFTA countries (Iceland, Norway and Switzerland), five candidate countries (Montenegro, the former Yugoslav Republic of Macedonia, Albania, Serbia and Turkey) as well as one potential candidate (Bosnia and Herzegovina).
In 2013, price levels for consumer goods and services differed widely across Europe. The highest price level among EU Member States was observed in Denmark, 39 % above the EU average, while in Bulgaria the price level was 51% below the EU average.
An understanding of the differences in price levels is important in the comparison of economic data, such as gross domestic product (GDP), because higher relative prices could make an economy look healthier than it really is. Observing price level differences is also important in the analysis of the development of the EU's single market for goods and services.
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