Manufacturers less positive in April
Producer confidence exceeds the long-term average of 1.3. It reached an all-time high (12.7) in November 2021 and an all-time low (-28.7) in April 2020.
|year||month||balance (average of the component questions)|
Less positive about order positions and future output
Manufacturers were less positive about order positions and future output in the next three months. Their opinion about current stocks was unchanged.
Two component indicators of producer confidence were positive. The majority of manufacturers consider their order position to be strong rather than weak, given the time of year. Furthermore, manufacturers anticipating output to increase over the next three months outnumber those expecting a decrease.
However, there was one negative component indicator: more manufacturers define their current stock of finished products as too large rather than too small.
Confidence down in over half of industries
In more than half of the major industrial industries, producer confidence deteriorated in April. Just as in the preceding months, confidence was highest in the electrotechnical and machinery industries.
|April (average of the component questions)||March (average of the component questions)|
|Electrotechnical products and machinery||15.3||18.3|
|Textiles, clothes, leather||3||4.7|
|Food, beverages, tobacco||-2.3||-0.6|
|Paper and printing||-3.7||-1.3|
|Timber and building materials||-10.9||1.8|
Capacity utilisation rate virtually the same
The industrial capacity utilisation rate stood at 82.5 percent at the start of Q2 2023. It was 82.6 percent in the previous quarter. Just as in the preceding two quarters, the capacity utilisation rate in the second quarter of 2023 was lower than in the same quarter a year earlier.
|Capacity utilisation rate (%) (%)|
Increasingly fewer manufacturers expect rising sales prices
The monthly Business Survey Netherlandsalso includes questions that are not related to producer confidence, about the sales prices for example. In April 2023, 17.7 percent of respondents expected their sales prices to increase in the next three months, 6 percent expected a decrease. As a result, the balance of positive and negative answers was 11.7 percent. That is the lowest level since December 2020. In January 2023, the balance was still 45.6 percent.
|Selling prices will rise (balance % positive and % negative answers)|
Manufacturing output down in February
In February 2023, the average daily output of the Dutch manufacturing industry was 2.0 percent lower than in February 2022. In January, the decrease was 2.3 percent.
Producer confidence improving in Germany
Germany is an important market for the Dutch manufacturing industry. In April, German entrepreneurs showed slightly improved confidence on balance, according to the Business Climate Index of the IFO Institute. They were less negative about their future business situation, but also less positive about their current situation. The average daily output generated by the German manufacturing industry was up by 1.7 percent year on year in February, as reported by Destatis.
- Dossier - Business cycle