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Economic picture less favourable in the Netherlands

Christian Fernsby |
According to the CBS Business Cycle Tracer, the economic situation in February is less favourable than in the previous month.

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Statistics Netherlands (CBS) reports that nine of the thirteen indicators in the Tracer as published mid-February are performing above the level of their long-term trend.

The CBS Business Cycle Tracer is a tool used to monitor the situation and the developments in the Dutch economy.

It uses thirteen key macro-economic indicators.

Together, these provide a coherent macro-economic picture which is based on CBS figures published over the past month or quarter.

It does not represent the situation at the level of individual households, businesses or regions.

In January, consumer confidence was more or less the same as in December.

Producer confidence was less favourable than in December.

Both consumer and producer confidence are above the long-term average.

In Q4 2019, the volume of investments in fixed assets was 4.2 percent up relative to the same quarter in 2018.

This was mainly due to higher investments in passenger cars, aircraft and machinery.

The total volume of exports grew by 3.7 percent in Q4 year-on-year.

Exports of machinery, petroleum products and chemical products increased in particular.

Dutch consumers spent 1.8 percent more in Q4 2019 than in Q4 2018.

They mainly spent more on home furnishings, electrical appliances, passenger cars and services.

The average daily output generated by the Dutch manufacturing industry was 0.6 percent down in December 2019 compared to the same month one year previously.

The year-on-year decline was smaller than in the previous month.

Adjusted for court session days, there were 28 more corporate bankruptcies in January than in the previous month.

The trend has been relatively stable in recent years.

In Q4 2019, the number of full-time and part-time jobs held by employees and self-employed rose by 48 thousand to 10,740 thousand jobs.

This is an increase of 0.4 percent relative to the previous quarter.

Over a period of twelve months, the number of jobs grew by 153 thousand.

The number of jobs has grown for almost six consecutive years.

Since Q2 2014, it has increased by 1,012 thousand.

The total number of hours worked by employees and self-employed reached almost a total of 3.5 billion in Q4 2019.

When adjusted for seasonal effects, this is 0.8 percent more than in the previous quarter.

At the end of December, the number of job vacancies stood at 291 thousand, up by over 3 thousand compared to the previous quarter.

Unemployment (according to the ILO definition) fell by 3 thousand to 316 thousand in Q4.

This means that 3.4 percent of the labour force were unemployed.

Tension in the labour market has grown slightly.

In Q4 2019, there were on average 92 job vacancies per 100 unemployed.

In Q3 2019, there were 90 vacancies per 100 unemployed.

According to the first estimate of GDP conducted by CBS, gross domestic product (GDP) rose by 0.4 percent in Q4 2019 relative to the previous quarter.

Growth was mainly due to consumption, investments and the trade balance.

GDP grew by 1.5 percent relative to Q4 2018.

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