Harmonised index of consumer prices (HICP) (prc_hicp)

National Reference Metadata in Euro SDMX Metadata Structure (ESMS)

Compiling agency: Central Statistical Office of Poland

Time Dimension: 2017-A0

Data Provider: PL1

Data Flow: HICP_ESMS_A

Eurostat metadata
Reference metadata
1. Contact
2. Metadata update
3. Statistical presentation
4. Unit of measure
5. Reference Period
6. Institutional Mandate
7. Confidentiality
8. Release policy
9. Frequency of dissemination
10. Accessibility and clarity
11. Quality management
12. Relevance
13. Accuracy
14. Timeliness and punctuality
15. Coherence and comparability
16. Cost and Burden
17. Data revision
18. Statistical processing
19. Comment
Related Metadata
Annexes (including footnotes)

For any question on data and metadata, please contact: EUROPEAN STATISTICAL DATA SUPPORT


1. Contact Top
1.1. Contact organisation

Central Statistical Office of Poland

1.2. Contact organisation unit

Trade and Services Department

1.5. Contact mail address


2. Metadata update Top
2.1. Metadata last certified 06/03/2017
2.2. Metadata last posted 06/04/2017
2.3. Metadata last update 06/04/2017

3. Statistical presentation Top
3.1. Data description

Harmonised indices of consumer prices (HICPs) give comparable measures of inflation for the countries and country groups they are produced. They are economic indicators that measure the change over time of the prices of consumer goods and services acquired by households. In other words they are a set of consumer price indices (CPIs) calculated according to a harmonised approach and a single set of definitions.

3.2. Classification system

ECOICOP (European Classification of Individual Consumption by Purpose) used since 2014; previously COICOP/HICP (UN Classification of Individual Consumption by Purpose adapted to the needs of Harmonised Indices of Consumer Prices) was used.

3.3. Coverage - sector

HICPs cover the whole household sector, more precisely the goods and services that are acquired by households.

3.4. Statistical concepts and definitions

The published data is as follows:


Monthly data (2015=100, 2005=100 and 1996=100):

  • Indices (table: prc_hicp_midx)
  • Annual rates of change (m/m-12) (table: prc_hicp_manr)
  • Monthly rates of change (m/m-1) (table: prc_hicp_mmor)
  • 12-month average rate of change (table: prc_hicp_mv12r)
  • First published data (prc_hicp_fp)

Annual data:

  • Average index and rate of change (table: prc_hicp_aind)
  • Country weights (table: prc_hicp_cow)
  • Item weights (table: prc_hicp_inw)



Monthly data (2015=100):

  • Indices (table: prc_hicp_cind)
  • Annual rates of change (table: prc_hicp_cann)
  • Monthly rates of change (table: prc_hicp_cmon)
3.5. Statistical unit

Each published index or rate of change refers to the 'final monetary consumption expenditure' of the whole household sector.

3.6. Statistical population

The target statistical universe is the 'household final monetary consumption expenditure' (HFMCE). The household sector to which the definition refers includes all individuals or groups of individuals irrespective of, in particular, the type of area in which they live, their position in the income distribution and their nationality or residence status. These definitions follow the national accounts concepts in the European System of Accounts (ESA 2010).

HICPs comprise all purchases by households within the territory of a country; those by both resident and non-resident households. HICPs cover the prices paid for goods and services in monetary transactions. The prices measured are those actually faced by consumers. The HICPs exclude interest and credit charges, regarding them as financing costs rather than consumption expenditure.

3.7. Reference area

The entire area of the country is covered by NA, HBS and consumer price surveys. There are no overseas territories.

Prices are collected from all urban areas and from some rural areas where trade centres are situated. There are 208 survey regions (since 2016; previously 209) where prices are collected. They are defined for each area separately, taking into account population size and density of the trade network. The price survey regions may be small towns or municipality parts (e.g. districts). Big trade centres or supermarkets located outside the administrative borders of a town or a city are also covered by the price collection system.

3.8. Coverage - Time

In Poland, the HICP was first compiled in 1999.

3.9. Base period

According to Commission Regulation (EU) 2015/2010 of 11 November 2015, starting with the release of January 2016 data, HICP and HICP-CT data are produced and published using the common index reference period (2015=100).

The change of reference year causes revisions to a number of previously published inflation rates because of rounding effects. Thus, inflation rates calculated from the 2015=100 series can differ from the rates calculated from the 2005=100 series.

The series with past reference periods (2005=100 and 1996=100) are included in dataset prc_hicp_midx. Those previous reference periods can be selected in the option 'Unit.

4. Unit of measure Top

Following units are used:

  • Index (actually unitless, i.e. it is the ratio of the price of the basket in a given period to the price in the base period multiplied by 100. However, the HICP can be thought of as the amount the average consumer would have to spend in a given period to buy the same basic goods and services that one would have to pay 100 monetary units for in the base period);
  • Percentage change on the same period of the previous year (rates);
  • Percentage change on the previous period (rates);
  • Percentage share of the total (weights).

5. Reference Period Top

Month (indices and rates).
Year (weights, indices and rates).

6. Institutional Mandate Top
6.1. Institutional Mandate - legal acts and other agreements

Regulation (EU) 2016/792 of the European Parliament and of the Council of 11 May 2016 on harmonised indices of consumer prices and the house price index, repealing Council Regulation (EC) No 2494/95 of 23 October 1995 and resets the legal basis for establishing a harmonised methodology for the compilation of the HICP, the euro area and the EU inflation figures.

This regulations gathers previous implementing legislation and covers over 20 specific governing issues, e.g. flash estimates, quality of weights, transmission and dissemination of sub-indices, coverage of goods and services, geographical and population coverage, minimum standards for the treatment of tariffs, insurance, health, education and social protection services, timing of entering prices, treatment of price reductions, treatment of service charges, revisions policy, new index reference periods, temporal coverage of price collection and sampling, replacement and quality adjustment procedures, seasonal items, and HICP at constant tax rates.

Recommendations on the treatment of health care, telecommunications, rents and internet purchases has also been published.

All relevant legal acts as well as further methodological details (recommendations) can be found in the HICP section on Eurostat's website.

6.2. Institutional Mandate - data sharing


7. Confidentiality Top
7.1. Confidentiality - policy

Regulation (EC) No 223/2009 of the European Parliament and of the Council, of 11 March 2009, on the transmission of data subject to statistical confidentiality to the Statistical Office of the European Communities

Law issued on 29 June 1995 on Official Statistics.

7.2. Confidentiality - data treatment

According to policy rules (see point 7.1).

8. Release policy Top
8.1. Release calendar

The release schedule is publically available and published at the end of each year for the full following year.

8.2. Release calendar access

Eurostat website: HICP Release schedule.

8.3. Release policy - user access

All users have equal access to HICP data which is available in Eurostat’s database. In addition HICP indices and rates of change for Poland (‘All-items’ main heading) are available on the CSO website.

9. Frequency of dissemination Top

Harmonised indices of consumer prices are produced monthly.

10. Accessibility and clarity Top
10.1. Dissemination format - News release

The HICP data for Poland (All items) is published in a table on the CSO website.

10.2. Dissemination format - Publications

HICPs for the 12 main ECOICOP divisions are presented in the yearly publication 'Prices in the National Economy'. 'Information on socio-economic situation of the country' contains the moving average and annual rates of change (monthly data) for the total HICP. 'Statistical Yearbook of the Republic of Poland' and 'Statistical Bulletin' hold the total HICPs.

10.3. Dissemination format - online database

HICP database: Eurostat’s website, CSO website.

10.4. Dissemination format - microdata access


10.5. Dissemination format - other


10.6. Documentation on methodology

The basic methodology for the Polish HICP is presented in the publication 'Prices in the national economy' and in 'Statistical Yearbook of the Republic of Poland'.

Additional information on methodology can be obtained on request from the CSO Trade and Services Department.

10.7. Quality management - documentation

Compliance Monitoring Information notes available in the Eurostat's HICP site, under 'Methodology' => Compliance Monitoring.

11. Quality management Top
11.1. Quality assurance

Controls on quality of the data

To counteract possible errors or mistakes, controls are implemented at different stages of the survey.

Price collectors are supervised and continuously controlled by the staff of the Regional Statistical Offices (RSOs). This also includes random checks of prices and products at outlets on a day after regular price collection. A controller checks whether the product observed is available on the outlet shelf and if its quality is the same as described in the form, and also if its price was correctly registered by the price collector.

There is a special software for the automatic control of codes, sale units and price range. If the discrepancy between the last month’s price and the current month’s price exceeds an indicated range, the software requires further checks to be carried out and comments are sent to the CSO. Any replacements have to be commented upon and explained. Then the necessary additional information from all the RSOs is gathered by the Central Statistical Office and the Price Statistics Centre of the Regional Statistical Office in Opole responsible for the prices control on the country level.

The final control is applied in the CSO, which also takes into consideration prices of comparable products recorded elsewhere and suspected data are explained by the RSOs by phone or by email.

11.2. Quality management - assessment

See Eurostat's Compliance Monitoring Report of 2008 and 2016.

12. Relevance Top
12.1. Relevance - User Needs

HICPs have a variety of potential other uses, for example:

  • wage, social benefit and contract indexation
  • input to economic forecasting and analysis
  • measuring specific price trends
  • accounting purposes and deflating other series
  • inflation targeting by central banks

Generally, HICPs are in particular suited for cross-country economic comparisons.

The main users of HICP are National Central Banks and other financial institutions; economic analysts, media and public at large.

12.2. Relevance - User Satisfaction

Not available.

12.3. Completeness

All requested ECOICOP indices and weights down to the 5-digit level are produced.

13. Accuracy Top
13.1. Accuracy - overall

The accuracy of HICP is generally considered to be high. Any unusual price movements are investigated at all stages of compilation. From the regional price collectors to the CSO office.

See point 11.1.

13.2. Sampling error

The CSO tries to reduce the sampling errors by using a sample of consumer prices that is as large as possible.

13.3. Non-sampling error

The CSO tries to reduce non-sampling errors through continuous methodological improvements and survey process improvements such as computer assisted price collection, which can help avoiding coding and typing errors.

14. Timeliness and punctuality Top
14.1. Timeliness

The full set of HICPs is sent to Eurostat each month according to a pre-announced schedule — in general about 15 days after the end of the month in question.

14.2. Punctuality

The data transmission deadlines are met.

15. Coherence and comparability Top
15.1. Comparability - geographical

HICP is calculated for the whole Poland, without division into regions. Data are collected from 208 survey regions throughout Poland, analyzed and processed by the same methodology.

15.2. Comparability - over time

HICP data are fully comparable over time. There have been several improvements in methodology since HICP was introduced with the aim of improving reliability and comparability of the HICP. These changes may have introduced breaks in time series. However, back calculations under the newer standards were performed when appropriate basic data was available.

15.3. Coherence - cross domain

Differences between the HICP and national CPI
The expenditure of institutional households and consumption expenditure of non-residents in the economic territory of the country is included in the HICP but excluded from the national CPI.
The consumption expenditure on games of chance are included in the national CPI but excluded from the HICP. The HICP weights for insurance are estimated using the annual average from three recent years.
Due to the different coverage of consumption expenditure, the weights used for the HICP and CPI differ.
The main sources of HICP weights are National Accounts while the system of weight for CPI is based on the data from Household Budget Survey. The current (2017) national accounts reference period for weights is the year 2015 (weights are price-updated to December 2016) while the household budget survey data derive from 2016.

15.4. Coherence - internal

HICPs are internally coherent. Higher level aggregations are derived from detailed indices according to well-defined procedures.

16. Cost and Burden Top

Not available.

17. Data revision Top
17.1. Data revision - policy

HICP series, including back data, are revisable under the terms set in Commission Regulation (EC) No 1921/2001 of 28 September 2001. The published HICP data may be revised for mistakes, new or improved information, and changes in the system of harmonised rules.

17.2. Data revision - practice

The HICP compiled by the Polish CSO is subject to revision, when e.g. there are major changes in coverage or the methodology implemented. The data is also revised if mistakes are detected.

18. Statistical processing Top
18.1. Source data

Sample size (2017)

Prices of about 1 500 consumer goods and services on average per month are surveyed.

Tariffs are applied in the following areas of the survey: electricity, gas and heat energy (ECOICOP 0451; 0452; 0455); passenger transport (ECOICOP 0731; 0732; 0735); postal and telecommunication services (ECOICOP 0810; 0830); state-owned radio and television (ECOICOP 0942); services by the state administration and judiciary (ECOICOP 1270).

Number of representative items at the lowest classification level (reference year 2017)

All-items: 1 487

01 Food and non-alcoholic beverages 332
02 Alcoholic beverages, tobacco 37
03 Clothing and footwear 133
04 Housing, water, electricity, gas and other fuels 88
05 Furnishings, household equip. and routine maintenance of the house 172
06 Health 118
07 Transport 122
08 Communications 70
09 Recreation and culture 197
10 Education 26
11 Restaurants and hotels 57
12 Miscellaneous goods and services 135

18.2. Frequency of data collection

Timing of price observation

Prices are collected between the 5th and 22nd day of each month. Most of the products are priced once a month, while fruit and vegetables are priced two times per month. There are also some products, which are priced more than twice per month (ex. flights, some periodicals).

18.3. Data collection

Outlet selection

Prices are collected in various outlet types, e.g. medium-sized, general, specialized, department stores, supermarkets, big trade centres, and also pharmacies, petrol stations, kiosks and permanent open-air market-places. Prices are not collected at temporary sales points.
Once a year, usually in November and December, the list of outlets is updated by regional statistical offices.


Techniques of product selection and specification

A purposive selection is applied. The Trade and Services Department is responsible for the final formulation of the representative items list.
Among all products in the outlet which are recognized as potential representative items from the list, the price collector chooses that one whose sales value is the most significant and which is always provided by the same supplier/producer and whose supplies are regular.
Price collectors are equipped with electronic devices called 'tablets' to register prices. Some items (mostly services) are collected by phone. Internet is also included as one of the sources of information on prices.

18.4. Data validation

Verification of prices: collectors verify all price changes and are required to provide explanation for unusual movements. Special software is used for this purpose. Statisticians analyze every item index to ensure that price movements are consistent with external information, such as market observation results, trade statistics and producer price statistics.

Verifications of processing: checks are made at all stages of index compilation – starting from price collectors up to the CSO staff.

18.5. Data compilation


The sources of weights are the National Accounts for ECOICOP 2-, 3-, 4- or even 5-digit levels if the data is available (since 2016; previously only 2- and 3-digit levels). In addition the Household Budget Survey and other source data for lower levels, e.g. the 5- or 6-digit levels (since 2016; previously 4-, 5- or 6-digit levels).
There are around 340 weights at the lowest level.
The weights are updated every year.
The reference period for current (2017) weights is the year 2015. They are expressed in December 2016 prices.


Computation of lowest level indices

The ratio of geometric mean is used for computing the price indices for the elementary aggregates.


Treatment of missing items and replacements

Missing price observation is estimated for two subsequent months, or a replacement for the product is proposed by an RSO if the old one has disappeared from the market permanently. In this case, the price of the replacement for the previous month is included if known from the outlet, or its price is estimated.


Introduction of newly significant goods and services

The list of representative items is updated annually based mainly on information gathered by price collectors during the year. The RSOs are asked usually in August, to send to the CSO their suggestions for changes. If their justifications for introducing new products to the list (or, conversely, deleting existing ones) are convincing and there are more such cases in the country, the proposal is considered at the annual meeting of the CSO and the RSO staff. New candidate products must represent a significant (and increasing) share in the turnover of the relevant group. Although it is recommended that the RSOs should keep the list of chosen products stable, replacements are necessary during the surveyed year if a new product appears on the market with a significant share of turnover.


Treatment of prices reductions

Reduced prices are included in the index. The reduced price has to refer to a product on the representative list of items for price collection. The product with the reduced price must fulfil all quality requirements: it cannot be damaged, spoiled or beyond of the expiry deadline for use. Promotions or 'out of season' price reductions are also taken into account. This applies also to services if the scope of the service and its quality is the same as in the previous month. When the reduced price of a service is only for a certain number of days, the monthly average price is used for calculating the index.


Treatment of seasonal items

Starting from January 2011 in accordance with Regulation EC No 330/2009 of 22 April 2009, the CSO has implemented new standards for the treatment of seasonal products in the HICP calculations in the following COICOP groups: fish, fruit, vegetables, clothes and footwear.
To adjust the methodological rules in the development of consumer price indices to the requirements of Regulation (Commission), the following changes have been introduced:
a) for seasonal products – strict annual weights system, i.e. the same amount of household expenditure as weights in all months,
b) for seasonal products, which are out-of-season – the estimated price is determined using counter-seasonal or all-seasonal estimation.

In 2012 the above methods of including seasonal products have been implemented in further groups in which seasonal goods and services are observed, i.e. Garden furniture, Heating and ventilation devices, Other small electrical household appliances, Motor equipment and tools, Other sport and open air recreation equipment of durable use, 093211 Sport and camping equipment for open air recreation, Sport equipment, Camping equipment for open air recreation, Repair of sport, camping and open air recreation equipment, Services related with recreation and sport – supporters, Package tourism in the country.

Since 2014 the new methods were used also with regard to, among others: Package tourism abroad, 11.2 Accommodation.

18.6. Adjustment

The quality parameters of the products surveyed are carefully observed to ensure their comparability. Each change in their descriptions is taken into account. In the case of quality changes, the bridged overlap, 50%-option or option costs methods are mainly used. If no substantial quality change occurs, the price change is recorded as affecting the index 1:1 (direct comparison). If there is a substantial quality change, the price change is assumed to be equal to the quality change, or the new product price is estimated based on the price dynamics of similar products found within the group in the region or the country.

Hedonic methods used to be studied and some research has been carried out, however due to budget constraints the works have been put on hold, but are envisaged for the future.

19. Comment Top


Related metadata Top

Annexes Top