The long-term average over the past two decades is 0.3. Producer confidence reached an all-time high (10.9) in February 2018 and an all-time low (-28.7) in April 2020.
|year||month||balance (average of the component questions)|
Manufacturers mainly more positive about order position
In April, manufacturers are mainly more positive about their order position compared to the previous month. They are also more optimistic about future output. Their opinion on stocks of finished products has improved as well.
Manufacturers’ opinions on all three component indicators are positive. There are fewer manufacturers who define their current stocks of finished products as too large rather than too small. Manufacturers who anticipate output to increase over the next three months outnumber those expecting a decrease. More manufacturers consider their order position to be strong rather than weak, given the time of year.
Confidence highest in timber and building materials industry
In April, producer confidence is again highest in the timber and building materials industry. In all industries shown below, confidence has improved and is positive.
|April 2021 (average of the component questions)||March 2021 (average of the component questions)|
|Timber and building materials||20.5||14.5|
|Electrotechnical products and machinery||14.9||11.1|
|Paper and printing||2.8||1.7|
|Textiles, clothes, leather||0.8||0.1|
|Food, beverages, tobacco||0.4||-4.8|
Capacity utilisation rate again higher
The industrial capacity utilisation rate stood at 81.7 percent at the start of Q2 2021. This was higher than at the start of Q1, but still lower than before the coronavirus crisis.
|Capacity utilisation rate (%) (%)|
Manufacturing output almost 2 percent down in February
In February 2021, the average daily output generated by the Dutch manufacturing industry was 1.7 percent down on February 2020. In January, output was up by 0.3 percent.
Producer confidence also improving in Germany
Germany is an important foreign market for the Dutch manufacturing industry. German producer confidence has improved to the highest level since June 2018, according to the Business Climate Index of the IFO Institute. Companies reported greatly improved business, but optimism declined with regard to expectations. Capacity utilisation rose from 81.9 to 86.2 percent. In February, the average daily output generated by the German manufacturing industry contracted by more than 6 percent year-on-year, as reported by Destatis.