Dutch manufacturers less positive

© Hollandse Hoogte
According to Statistics Netherlands (CBS), producer confidence among Dutch manufacturers deteriorated in May 2019. Confidence stands at 4.7, down from 6.7 in April. This is the lowest level since 2017. Manufacturers are mainly less positive about future output and their order positions.

The long-term average over the past two decades is 1.0. 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)
jaarmaandbalance
2015June4.6
July3.7
August3.5
September3.8
October2.4
November4.0
December3.0
2016January3.2
February3.1
March3.9
April4.7
May4.4
June5.4
July5.1
August1.2
September3.4
October4.3
November3.4
December4.7
2017January6.0
February7.0
March7.8
April8.3
May6.1
June7.2
July6.6
August5.4
September8.5
October8.2
November9.1
December8.9
2018January10.3
February10.9
March9.5
April8.2
May9.8
June7.7
July6.3
August5.9
September5.7
October5.9
November7.2
December7.5
2019January5.8
February6.3
March6.1
April6.7
May4.7

Less positive about future output, orders and stocks

In May, Dutch manufacturers are less optimistic about their future output and their order positions. They also were less positive about their stocks of finished products than in the previous month.

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, there are more manufacturers who define their current stocks of finished products as too small rather than too large.

Producers of timber and building materials the most positive

In May, producers in the timber and building materials industry have the most optimistic outlook. However, confidence deteriorated in most sectors. Pessimism prevailed again in the transport equipment industry.

Producer confidence by sector (seasonally adjusted) (average of the component questions)
 May 2019April 2019
Timber and building materials12.010.7
Metal9.29.1
Textiles, clothes, leather8.616.4
Food, beverages, tobacco6.84.0
Electrotechnical products and machinery6.711.4
Paper and printing3.15.3
Petroleum2.35.5
Transport equipment-6.3-3.9
 

Manufacturing output 1 percent down in March

In March 2019, the average daily output generated by the Dutch manufacturing industry was 1.0 percent down on the same month last year. In the previous month, output was more or less the same year-on-year. In March, the strongest year-on-year output growth was recorded in the rubber and plastic industry.

German manufacturers again slightly 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 slightly this month. This was due to less positive opinions on the current situation. However, business expectations were less negative. In March, the average daily output generated by the German manufacturing industry was over 2 percent lower than in the same month last year.

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