Growing optimism among Dutch manufacturers

28/04/2016 15:00
According to Statistics Netherlands (CBS), confidence among Dutch manufacturers improved further in April reaching the highest level in 5 years. The producer confidence indicator rose from 3.9 in March to 4.7 in April, mainly because manufacturers are more positive about their order books and stock levels.

Since October 2014, optimism has prevailed among Dutch manufacturers. Manufacturers in the wood and construction industry are most optimistic.

Confidence among manufacturers is still well above its long-term average over the past two decades (0.5). The confidence indicator reached an all-time high (9.4) in January 2008, but dipped to an all-time low (- 23.5) more than one year later.


Producer confidence in manufacturing industry (seasonally adjusted)

Manufacturing industry more positive about order books and stocks

In April, Dutch manufacturers were more positive about their order books and their stocks of finished products, but less positive about their future output in the next three months.

In April too, all three component indicators of producer confidence are positive. Manufacturers who anticipate output growth over the next three months outnumber those expecting output to decline during this period. Given the time of year, manufacturers who think the number of orders they received is large outnumber those who think the opposite. Lastly, manufacturers who define their stocks of finished products as too small still constitute a majority over those who define their stocks of finished products as too large.

Producers wood and construction industry most optimistic

Manufacturers of wood and construction materials are most optimistic, followed by producers of petroleum derivatives, chemical, rubber and plastic products. Manufacturers in the wood and construction industry are very positive about their order books. Manufacturers of textiles, clothes and leather are somewhat pessimistic.

Producer confidence by sector (seasonally adjusted)

Sustained growth manufacturing output

Several weeks ago, CBS reported that the average daily output generated by Dutch manufacturing industry in February 2016 was 1.7 percent up from February 2015. This is mainly due to considerable production growth in the transport equipment industry and the electrical appliances industry. Adjusted for seasonal effects, manufacturing output is currently at the highest level in four years.

German producer confidence also improves further

Germany is an important foreign market for Dutch manufacturing industry. Just as their Dutch colleagues, German manufacturers were more optimistic in April than in March. Daily output generated by German manufacturing industry was also higher in February 2016 than in February 2015.

Related items