Economic situation slightly better

The economic situation at the end of September was slightly better than at the end of August. This is mainly due to the fact that the decline in exports was reduced by half. The decline in consumption also slowed down considerably. The heart of the indicators in the Business Cycle Tracer is firmly located in the recession stage. All indicators are currently below the level of their long-term average.

The Dutch economy contracted by 5.4 percent in the second quarter compared to the same quarter of 2008. The contraction was larger than in the first quarter. Compared to the preceding quarter the economy shrank by 1.1 percent, taking calendar and seasonal effects into account.

The consumer confidence indicator remained unchanged in September and stood at -17. Producer confidence deteriorated marginally, to -9.8. Providers of business services were clearly more optimistic about their future turnover in September than in August.

In July, the volume of goods exports was 6 percent down on twelve months previously. In June, the decline was more than 11 percent. The reduction in production and consumption was also somewhat smaller than in preceding months. Industrial production dropped by 10 percent, while consumer spending fell by 2 percent. 

Capital market interest dropped for the second consecutive month and stood at 3.6 in August. Dutch inflation was 0.3 percent. Selling prices in manufacturing industry were 12.5 percent down on August 2008.

In the period June–August 2009, seasonally adjusted unemployment stood at 386 thousand, 15 thousand up on May-July. The number of jobs in the second quarter was 72 thousand down on one year previously. At the end of June there were 127 thousand unfilled vacancies, 25 thousand less than at the end of March. The number of hours worked in temp jobs dropped considerably in the second quarter of 2009 relative to the first quarter.

Gross domestic product (GDP)

Gross domestic product (GDP)