Dutch manufacturers slightly more positive

According to Statistics Netherlands (CBS), producer confidence among Dutch manufacturers has increased slightly in February 2019. Confidence stands at 6.3 in February, up from 5.8 in January. The increase can be attributed to more positive opinions on the stocks of finished products.

The long-term average over the past two decades is 0.9. Producer confidence reached an all-time high (10.9) in February 2018 and an all-time low (-23.5) in February 2009. Optimism has prevailed among Dutch manufacturers since October 2014.

Producer confidence manufacturing industry (seasonally adjusted) (average of the component questions)
2015 March1.4
2015 April3.3
2015 May4.1
2015 June4.6
2015 July3.7
2015 August3.5
2015 September3.8
2015 October2.4
2015 November4.0
2015 December3.0
2016 January3.2
2016 February3.1
2016 March3.9
2016 April4.7
2016 May4.4
2016 June5.4
2016 July5.1
2016 August1.2
2016 September3.4
2016 October4.3
2016 November3.4
2016 December4.7
2017 January6.0
2017 February7.0
2017 March7.8
2017 April8.3
2017 May6.1
2017 June7.2
2017 July6.6
2017 August5.4
2017 September8.5
2017 October8.2
2017 November9.1
2017 December8.9
2018 January10.3
2018 February10.9
2018 March9.5
2018 April8.2
2018 May9.8
2018 June7.7
2018 July6.3
2018 August5.9
2018 September5.7
2018 October5.9
2018 November7.2
2018 December7.5
2019 January5.8
2019 February6.3

More positive about stocks

In February, Dutch manufacturers are more positive about their stocks of finished products than in the previous month. On the other hand, they are less optimistic about future output. Opinions on order positions have deteriorated slightly.

All three component indicators of producer confidence are positive. Manufacturers who anticipate output growth over the next three months outnumber those expecting output decline. More manufacturers consider their order position to be strong rather than weak, given the time of year. Furthermore, manufacturers define their current stocks of finished products as too small rather than too large.

Producers in the wood and building materials industry again most positive

In February, producers in the wood and building materials industry are the most positive for the twelfth consecutive month. However, producer confidence in this industry is less positive than in January.

Producer confidence by sector (seasonally adjusted) (average of the component questions)
 February 2019January 2019
Wood and construction17.121.6
Electrotechnical products and machinery9.010.3
Food, beverages, tobacco8.17.4
Paper and printing6.35.6
Textiles, clothes, leather5.211.0
Transport equipment0.94.3

Manufacturing output over 4 percent down in December

The average daily output generated by the Dutch manufacturing industry was 4.2 percent down in December relative to the same month one year previously. This is the first decline in over three years.

German manufacturers again less positive

Germany is an important foreign market for the Dutch manufacturing industry. According to the IFO index, in manufacturing the business climate index fell markedly once again this month, to the lowest level since May 2016. This was due to both more pessimistic business expectations and less optimistic opinions on the current situation. In December, the average daily output generated by the German manufacturing industry was 4 percent lower than in the same month one year previously.

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