In 2002, Dutch households put 9.1 million euro more in their savings accounts than they withdrew. In 2001, the difference between deposits and withdrawals was 6 billion euro less.
At the end of 2002, households averaged 24 thousand euro in savings accounts, considerably more than in the previous years.
Savings balance, 1998- 2002
Holiday allowances and annual bonuses
The difference between deposits and withdrawals was most significant in January, May and June. Holiday allowances are usually paid out in May or June, annual bonuses by the end of the year.
In November the savings balance was negative. Large withdrawals from savings accounts are indicative of the last quarter of the year due to expenses in December.
Savings balance per month, 2002
Households average 24 thousand euro in savings accounts
Households averaged 24 thousand euro in savings accounts by the end of 2002, whereas in 1992 they averaged 15 thousand euro. Substantial amounts were saved during the last two years.
Savings balance per household, 1992-2002
Economic depression boosts savings
The economic depression is partly accountable for the growing savings balance. In 2002, for instance, the price of shares on the Amsterdam Stock Exchange nosedived by an average of almost 35 percent.
For the third consecutive year, exchange rates are dropping. Since the peak of 4 September 2000, the value of the average block of shares was reduced by 64 percent.
Jos de Kruijk