Consumers slightly more pessimistic in October

© Hollandse Hoogte / Hans van Rhoon
In October, confidence among Dutch consumers has slightly deteriorated, as reported today by Statistics Netherlands (CBS). The consumer confidence indicator stands at -30, down from -28 in September. Consumers are more pessimistic about the economic situation, while their willingness to buy remains unchanged.

 At -30, the consumer confidence indicator in October stands far below its long-term average over the past two decades (-6). The indicator reached an all-time high (36) in January 2000 and an all-time low (-41) in March 2013.

Consumer confidence, seasonally adjusted
YearMonthbalance (average of the component questions)
2016November20
2016December21
2017January21
2017February22
2017March24
2017April26
2017May23
2017June23
2017July25
2017August26
2017September23
2017October23
2017November22
2017December25
2018January24
2018February23
2018March24
2018April25
2018May23
2018June23
2018July23
2018August21
2018September18
2018October15
2018November13
2018December9
2019January0
2019February-2
2019March -4
2019April-3
2019May-3
2019June0
2019July2
2019August0
2019September-2
2019October-1
2019November-2
2019December-2
2020January-3
2020February-2
2020March-2
2020April-22
2020May-31
2020June-27
2020July-26
2020August-29
2020September-28
2020October-30

Economic sentiment deteriorated

Consumers’ sentiment about the general economic situation has deteriorated in October. This component indicator stands at -61, down from -58. Consumers are more pessimistic about the economic situation in the next twelve months. Opinions on the economic situation over the past twelve months remain unchanged. 

Willingness to buy unchanged

Consumer’ willingness to buy stands at -9, the same as in September. Consumers are slightly more optimistic about their expected financial situation for the next twelve months. On the other hand, they are somewhat more pessimistic about their financial situation over the past twelve months. Furthermore, they are just as negative as in September about the question whether it is a favourable time for large purchases.

Consumers extremely gloomy about future unemployment

In October, consumers are more pessimistic about future unemployment than they were in September. Approximately 92 percent of the respondents expect unemployment to rise in the next twelve months, whereas 5 percent anticipate a drop. As a result, the balance of positive and negative answers stands at -87. Since the beginning of the time series in 1986, consumers were only more pessimistic about future unemployment in March 1993 (-88).

Expectations on unemployment
YearMonthbalance (balance % positive and % negative answers)
2016November13
2016December23
2017January36
2017February43
2017March38
2017April42
2017May34
2017June37
2017July36
2017August45
2017September41
2017October49
2017November45
2017December50
2018January53
2018February51
2018March52
2018April52
2018May45
2018June49
2018July46
2018August46
2018September46
2018October36
2018November38
2018December28
2019January25
2019February25
2019March25
2019April21
2019May28
2019June29
2019July23
2019August11
2019September12
2019October5
2019November-11
2019December-13
2020January-6
2020February0
2020March-14
2020April-78
2020May-81
2020June-76
2020July-79
2020August-83
2020September-77
2020October-87

Coronavirus has had a significant impact on consumer confidence. In order to arrive at proper series estimates in terms of level and seasonal influences, CBS has made some adjustments to its time series model. This could have resulted in slightly reduced accuracy of the data.

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