Economy shrinks 4.5% in first quarter

The Dutch economy contracted by 4.5% in the first three months of this year, its sharpest drop in growth for more than 60 years, the national statistics office CBS said on Thursday.

Quarter on quarter, economic growth shrank 2.6%, the highest figure ever recorded, the CBS said.
Consumer confidence was stable and industry was lightly less pessimistic, the CBS said. Producer confidence was up slightly, although business service providers were less positive than they had been in May.


The CBS also announced that inflation fell slightly to 1.4% in June, compared with 1.6% in May. This was the third decline in the inflation rate in a year. The fall in food prices was largely responsible, the organisation said.
Dutch inflation was still considerably higher than in other EU countries. In the eurozone as a whole, consumer prices fell by 0.1% on average. Prices in the Netherlands were boosted by higher taxes on petrol, tobacco and beer, the CBS said.

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