Dutch consumer spending up again

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According to figures released by Statistics Netherlands (CBS), Dutch consumer spending on goods and services was 2.2 percent up in July 2016 from July 2015. Consumers mainly spent more on durable goods such as household appliances and cars. The CBS Consumption Radar shows that circumstances for Dutch household consumption are more favourable in September than in July.

Consumption figures are adjusted for price changes and differences in the shopping-day pattern.

Dutch consumers particularly spend more on durable goods

Spending on durable goods was 5.1 percent up in July from one year previously. In particular, consumers spent more on household appliances. They also spent more on cars and clothing. Consumer spending on food, beverages and tobacco products and spending in the category ‘other goods’ - which includes motor fuels - was also up from one year previously.

Last week, CBS already reported that retail turnover in July was almost 1 percent up from July 2015. Adjusted for the shopping-day pattern, retail turnover would have been somewhat higher.

Lastly, household spending on services - accounting for over half of total domestic consumer spending - grew by 1.6 percent. These services include house rent, public transport, visits to restaurants or hairdressers and insurance premium.

Domestic household consumption by category (volume, adjusted for shopping-days)
 % change
Durable consumer goods5.1
Food; drinks and tobacco2.1
Other goods (e.g. gas)1.1

Consumer climate more favourable in September than in July

CBS also publishes figures about circumstances for household consumption. Household consumption is affected by consumers’ expectations, their personal financial situation and developments on the job market.

On balance, circumstances for Dutch household consumption were more favourable in September than in July, according to Statistics Netherlands’ Household Consumption Radar. That is mainly due to Dutch consumers being more positive about the development of future unemployment. Furthermore, the year-on-year growth of the employed labour force was higher than one month previously. On the other hand, the mood of Dutch manufacturers about future employment in their sector was more negative.

The numbers in this publication are provisional and can be adjusted.