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News : EU Economy Last Updated: Apr 24, 2009 - 5:31:05 PM


EU27 Households spend more than half of their expenditure on housing and food; Ireland leads with spending on alcohol at 4.1%
By Finfacts Team
Jun 20, 2008 - 7:39:34 AM

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A third of household expenditure in the EU27 in 2005 went on housing, including utilities & furniture (33.1%), and almost a fifth on food, beverages & tobacco (19.4%). The other half of the expenditure was mainly dedicated to transport (11.9%), recreation & culture (8.4%), clothing & footwear (5.7%), restaurants & hotels (5.3%), health (3.4%), communications (3.3%) and education (1.0%). Ireland leads with spending on alcohol at 4.1% of total expenditure compared with EU27 average of 1.2%.

Household expenditure on housing & furniture ranged from 19% of total household expenditure in 2005 inRomania and 20% in Malta to 38% in Bulgaria and 37% in Luxembourg. The shares for food, beverages & tobacco ranged from 11% in Luxembourg and 12% in the United Kingdom and Sweden to 50% in Romania and 37% in Lithuania.

These figures published by Eurostat, the Statistical Office of the European Union are based on data from the 2005 Household Budget Survey1 (HBS).The HBS provides a detailed breakdown of the consumption expenditure of households by socio-economic aspects, such as the number of adults and children in the household, the working situation of the reference person in the household, the age of the reference person etc. The HBS also provides data on a very detailed level of consumption2.

Households with lowest income spend 60% of their expenditure on food and housing, compared with 45% for households with highest income

There are significant differences in the spending patterns of households within the EU, depending on their equivalised disposable income3. In 2005, the lowest quintile of households according to disposable income (the 20% of households with the lowest equivalised disposable income) in the EU27spent 25% of their expenditure on food, beverages & tobacco, and 37% on housing, while the highest quintile (the 20% of households with the highest equivalised disposable income) spent 15% and 31% respectively.

On the other hand, the highest quintile spent a larger proportion of their expenditure on transport (14%), recreation & culture (9%) and restaurants & hotels (6%) than the lowest quintile did (8%, 6% and 4% respectively).

Household consumption by consumption categories, 2005, in %


 
Food, beverages & tobacco*
Clothing & footwear
Housing**
Health
Transport
EU27
19.4
5.7
33.1
3.4
11.9
Belgium
15.7
4.7
30.9
4.7
12.9
Bulgaria
35.3
3.1
37.7
4.3
5.0
Czech Republic
23.5
5.6
26.8
2.0
11.1
Denmark
15.2
4.9
36.0
2.7
13.8
Germany
12.9
4.8
35.0
3.6
13.3
Estonia
25.3
5.5
35.1
2.6
10.0
Ireland
17.9
5.1
30.6
2.5
11.6
Greece
18.9
7.0
30.2
5.9
10.4
Spain
20.3
6.9
35.0
2.2
10.5
France
15.7
6.6
32.4
4.2
13.5
Italy
20.4
7.0
35.4
3.9
11.9
Cyprus
17.0
7.7
27.5
4.7
14.6
Latvia
32.3
7.3
22.3
3.7
10.9
Lithuania
37.3
7.9
23.1
4.7
8.1
Luxembourg
11.0
6.4
37.2
2.6
16.2
Hungary
26.2
5.0
24.1
4.1
14.1
Malta
24.0
8.3
19.8
3.0
16.6
Netherlands
12.6
5.8
32.0
1.3
10.9
Austria
15.8
5.6
28.5
3.1
16.1
Poland
28.0
4.6
36.0
4.6
8.1
Portugal
17.8
4.1
31.4
6.1
12.9
Romania
50.0
6.2
19.4
3.8
6.5
Slovenia
19.1
7.0
28.8
1.5
15.6
Slovakia
30.1
6.1
28.0
3.1
9.2
Finland
15.1
3.8
32.3
3.5
15.7
Sweden
12.4
4.6
35.5
2.3
13.0
United Kingdom
12.3
5.0
36.1
1.2
13.5

 
Commun
ications
Recreation & culture
Education
Restaurants & hotels
EU27
3.3
8.4
1.0
5.3
Belgium
2.9
9.5
0.5
6.3
Bulgaria
4.6
2.9
0.5
3.6
Czech Republic
4.6
10.6
0.5
5.1
Denmark
2.4
11.4
0.4
4.0
Germany
2.9
11.1
0.8
4.3
Estonia
5.5
6.4
1.3
3.1
Ireland
3.4
10.1
1.9
6.0
Greece
3.8
4.2
2.4
8.6
Spain
2.7
6.4
1.1
9.3
France
3.3
6.9
0.6
4.6
Italy
2.2
5.8
0.7
5.0
Cyprus
3.4
6.0
4.0
8.3
Latvia
5.8
6.3
1.4
5.3
Lithuania
4.6
4.3
1.1
4.6
Luxembourg
2.2
7.5
0.4
7.9
Hungary
6.5
8.5
0.8
3.2
Malta
2.9
10.1
1.2
7.1
Netherlands
3.1
10.9
1.0
5.6
Austria
2.6
12.6
0.8
5.5
Poland
4.8
6.3
1.3
1.7
Portugal
3.0
5.7
1.7
10.8
Romania
4.9
4.2
0.8
1.1
Slovenia
4.0
9.4
0.8
4.3
Slovakia
4.7
6.6
0.9
4.8
Finland
2.8
11.2
0.2
4.2
Sweden
2.8
12.2
-
3.5
United Kingdom
2.7
12.3
1.4
8.0

* Including alcoholic beverages.
** Housing, water, electricity, gas & other fuels and furnishings, household equipment & routine maintenance of the house.
The sum of the different consumption categories is not equal to 100% due to miscellaneous goods and services not included in the table.

Household consumption expenditure by quintile* in the EU27, 2005, in %


 
Overall
Lowest quintile
Highest quintile
Food, beverages & tobacco**
19.4
25.3
15.0
Clothing & footwear
5.7
5.0
6.1
Housing***
33.1
36.6
31.1
Health
3.4
3.0
3.7
Transport
11.9
8.1
14.4
Communications
3.3
3.7
3.0
Recreation & culture
8.4
6.4
9.4
Education
1.0
0.7
1.2
Restaurants & hotels
5.3
4.0
6.2
Miscellaneous
8.7
7.0
9.9

* Lowest quintile: the 20% of households with the lowest equivalised disposable income; Highest quintile: the 20% of households with the highest equivalised disposable income.
** Including alcoholic beverages.
*** Housing, water, electricity, gas & other fuels and furnishings, household equipment & routine maintenance of the house.


Share of household expenditure on restaurants & cafés vary between under 1% in Romania and 10% in Portugal

One key element of the Household Budget Survey is the possibility to examine consumption patterns at a very detailed level. The table below presents just four of the 234 products available. It should be noted that the relative level of expenditure in each Member State does not simply reflect the quantity of consumption, but also price levels and the overall level of household expenditure.

In 2005, household expenditure on alcoholic beverages ranged from 0.5% of total expenditure in Cyprus to 4.1% in Ireland. For meat, the share of household expenditure ranged from 1.9% in Sweden to 11.8% in Romania. The share for newspapers, books & stationary varied between 0.6% in Bulgaria and 2.4% in Malta. For household expenditure on restaurants & cafés, it ranged from 0.5% in Romania to 9.6% in Portugal.

Household consumption expenditure for detailed consumption purposes, 2005, in %


 
Alcoholic beverages
Meat
Newspapers, books
& stationery
Restaurants, cafés
& the like
EU27
1.2
3.8
1.4
3.9
Belgium
1.5
3.4
1.5
4.8
Bulgaria
1.2
7.4
0.6
3.1
Czech Republic
1.6
5.0
1.5
2.9
Denmark
1.8
2.6
1.3
3.0
Germany
1.0
:
1.9
3.1
Estonia
1.6
5.6
1.0
1.6
Ireland
4.1
2.6
1.6
3.5
Greece
0.6
3.6
1.2
7.7
Spain
0.7
4.7
1.3
8.4
France
1.2
3.4
1.1
2.3
Italy
0.9
4.4
1.3
3.1
Cyprus
0.5
2.6
1.1
7.3
Latvia
1.7
7.5
1.2
2.6
Lithuania
2.2
10.0
1.0
3.0
Luxembourg
1.1
2.2
0.9
5.9
Hungary
1.1
6.8
1.6
1.0
Malta
0.8
4.6
2.4
5.9
Netherlands
1.3
2.2
1.9
4.2
Austria
1.1
2.9
1.5
4.9
Poland
1.0
7.3
1.3
1.2
Portugal
0.8
3.8
1.0
9.6
Romania
2.3
11.8
1.0
0.5
Slovenia
1.2
4.1
1.4
2.4
Slovakia
1.5
6.9
1.2
1.2
Finland
1.7
2.3
1.9
2.9
Sweden
1.2
1.9
1.3
3.2
United Kingdom
1.4
2.2
1.4
6.4

: Data not available

  1. The Household Budget Survey (HBS) is a national survey conducted every five years mainly focusing on consumption expenditure of households.
  2. Based on the Classification of Individual Consumption by Purpose Adapted to the Needs of Harmonized Indices of Consumer Prices (2000).
  3. Equivalised disposable income is calculated as the disposable income of the household divided by an equivalised number of persons in the household, where a weight of 1.0 is attributed to the first household member aged 14 or over, 0.5 to each additional member aged 14 or more and 0.3 to each member aged less than 14 years old.

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