Manufacturers slightly less positive in February

© Hollandse Hoogte / Herman Engbers
In February 2022, the mood among Dutch manufacturers is somewhat less optimistic. Producer confidence has deteriorated from 9.0 in January to 8.5 in February, as reported today by Statistics Netherlands (CBS). However, it is still well above its long-term average this month.

The long-term average over the past two decades stands at 0.8. Producer confidence reached an all-time high (12.7) in November 2021 and an all-time low (-28.7) in April 2020.

Producer confidence manufacturing industry (seasonally adjusted)
yearmonthbalance (average of the component questions)
2018March9.5
2018April8.2
2018May9.8
2018June7.7
2018July6.3
2018August5.9
2018September5.7
2018October5.9
2018November7.2
2018December7.5
2019January5.8
2019February6.3
2019March6.1
2019April6.7
2019May4.7
2019Juni3.3
2019Juli 3.9
2019August3.9
2019September3.3
2019October3.6
2019November2.8
2019December2.9
2020January2.5
2020February3.7
2020March0.2
2020April-28.7
2020May-25.1
2020June-15.1
2020July-8.7
2020August-5.4
2020September-4.8
2020October-5.6
2020November-3.8
2020December-0.4
2021January0.6
2021February0.1
2021March3.4
2021April6.5
2021May8.8
2021June11.5
2021July12.3
2021August9.6
2021September11.1
2021October12.3
2021November12.7
2021December10.2
2022January9
2022February8.5

Manufacturers less positive about future output and stocks of finished products

In February, manufacturers are less positive mainly about their future output and their stocks of finished product. On the other hand, opinions on their order positions were slightly more positive compared to the previous month.

Two out of the three component indicators of producer confidence are positive. 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.  

Manufacturers have an overall negative opinion on their stocks of finished products; more manufacturers define their current stocks as too large than too small.

Confidence highest in timber and building materials industry

As of February, confidence has declined in over half of all manufacturing industries. Confidence has decreased most sharply in the transport equipment industry, where expectations deteriorated substantially on future output in particular. In February, confidence is highest in the timber and building materials industry.

Producer confidence by sector (seasonally adjusted)
 February 2022 (average of the component questions)January 2022 (average of the component questions)
Timber and building materials22.420
Electrotechnical products and machinery15.316.4
Transport equipment11.418.9
Paper and printing11.111.4
Food, beverages, tobacco6.93.2
Petroleum68.8
Metal3.88.4
Textiles, clothes, leather2.910.2

Manufacturing output almost 13 percent up in December

In December 2021, the average daily output generated by the Dutch manufacturing industry was up by 12.6 percent relative to December 2020. Output was up by 10.9 percent year on year in the previous month. Output in December was at the highest level ever recorded. 

Producer confidence has improved in Germany

Germany is an important foreign market for the Dutch manufacturing industry. In February, German producer confidence according to the Business Climate Index of the IFO Institute has risen substantially. There are more positive expectations on both current and future output. In January, the average daily output generated by the German manufacturing industry fell by 2.0 percent year-on-year, as reported by Destatis. Relative to December 2019, it was lower by 2.8 percent.