The consumer price index (CPI) increased by 0.3 % in May 2021 compared with the previous month, reaching 101.0 points (December 2020 = 100). Inflation was +0.6 % compared with the same month of the previous year. These are the results of the Federal Statistical Office (FSO).
The 0.3 % increase compared with the previous month is due to several factors including rising prices for housing rentals. International package holidays also recorded a price increase, as did root vegetables. In contrast, prices for fruiting vegetables and medicines decreased.
Quality of results
The current pandemic affects all of society and the entire economy. In this difficult context, the Federal Statistical Office (FSO) must continue to provide public opinion, particularly the country’s decision makers and media, with reliable figures.
In May 2021, it was possible to collect all prices according to the survey plan with the exception of prices in the following areas: package holidays, airfares and restaurants. For package holidays and airfares, the price trend measured for those articles that could be ascertained was applied to missing articles from the same category, neutralising their impact on the results. For restaurants, the results shown are based on prices from the previous period. With the exception of these categories, the quality of the price collection for the CPI in May 2021 meets the usual standards.
Harmonised Index of Consumer Prices (HICP)
In May 2021, the Swiss Harmonised Index of Consumer Prices (HICP) stood at 100.99 points (base 2015 = 100). This corresponds to a rate of change of +0.2% compared with the previous month and of +0.3% compared with the same month the previous year. Due to the effects of the pandemic, the same missing price imputation techniques used for the CPI were introduced for the HICP.
The HICP is a supplementary indicator for inflation based on a harmonised method across EU member countries. It enables inflation in Switzerland to be compared with that of European countries.
The European Statistical Office, Eurostat, publishes the results according to a predefined calendar. The FSO publishes a comparison between inflation in Switzerland and Europe on the webpage http://www.ipch.bfs.admin.ch. A methodological note, the 2021 weighting of the Swiss standard HICP basket and the FSO News publication on the HICP are also available on this page. Eurostat will publish the HICP indices for other European countries for May 2021 on 17 June 2021. You will find the HICP results on the Eurostat website at the following address: https://ec.europa.eu/eurostat/web/hicp