Economic situation virtually unchanged

According to Statistics Netherlands’ Business Cycle Tracer, the economic situation in July was about the same as in June. Economic recovery has come to a virtual standstill in the last few months. In July, improvements and deteriorations again cancelled each other out. Most indicators in the Business Cycle Tracer have an upward trend, their growth rate is increasing.

The mood among consumers did not improve further in June and July. The consumer confidence indicator remained stable at -2, the same as in May. The mood among manufacturers improved. The producer confidence indicator climbed from 0.7 in June to 1,2 in July, reaching the highest level in three years.

The exports of goods, private sector investments and household consumption show a mixed picture. The volume of exports of goods was 3.1 percent down in May 2014 from May 2013. Investments in tangible fixed assets were 0.5 percent higher than twelve months previously. Household spending on goods and services was 0.1 percent up from May 2013.

The average daily output generated by Dutch manufacturing industry was 0.5 percent up in May 2014 from May 2013.  Furthermore, 464 businesses and institutions (excluding one-man businesses) were declared bankrupt in June.

The labour market shows a mixed picture. In June, seasonally adjusted unemployment fell further, to reach 658 thousand. With 8.4 percent, the unemployment rate in the Dutch labour force remains high. The number of jobs of employees declined further in the first quarter. The number of job vacancies, on the other hand, increased in the first quarter relative to the fourth quarter of 2013. The total amount of hours worked in temp jobs grew by 0.7 percent in the first quarter of 2014 relative to the fourth quarter of 2013. The growth was less substantial than in the preceding quarters, though.

The most recent figure on economic growth refers to the first quarter of 2014. Relative to the fourth quarter of 2013, the Dutch economy showed a negative growth rate of 0.6 percent. Quarter-on-quarter growth figures are adjusted for calendar and seasonal effects. The Dutch economy showed zero growth in the first quarter of 2014 relative to the same period last year.

Gross domestic product (GDP)

Gross domestic product (GDP)

More figures can be found in dossier Business cycle.

For more information on economic indicators, the reader is referred to the Economic Monitor.