Economic situation slightly better

The economic situation was slightly better at the end of May than at the end of April. Most indicators in the Business Cycle Tracer are still in the recession stage. Fourteen of the fifteen indicators are below their long-term average.

The Dutch economy grew marginally in the first quarter of 2010. The volume of gross domestic product was 0.1 percent up on the first quarter of 2009. The marginal increase was preceded by five consecutive quarters with a contraction. Compared to the preceding quarter the economy grew by 0.2 percent in the first quarter, taking calendar and seasonal effects into account. This is the third consecutive quarter showing positive quarter-on-quarter growth.

Consumer confidence deteriorated marginally in May. For the first time in nearly two years, the mood among manufacturers was optimistic. Providers of business services were positive about their future turnover, though not as positive as in the preceding month.

Capital market interest stood at 3.3 percent in April. Dutch inflation rose to 1.1 percent. Selling prices in manufacturing industry were nearly 11 percent higher than in April 2009.

Unemployment decreased for the first time since the summer of 2008. In the period February-April, unemployment was 9 thousand down on the period January–March. The number of jobs in the first quarter was 145 thousand down on one year previously. At the end of March there were 113 thousand unfilled vacancies, i.e. 11 thousand fewer than at the end of December. The decrease in the number of hours worked in temp jobs slowed down further.

Gross domestic product (GDP)

Gross domestic product (GDP)