Dutch consumer confidence remains upbeat on employment hopes

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The positive mood among Dutch consumers was virtually unchanged in January, the national statistics office CBS said on Monday.

The consumer confidence index hit 24 this month compared with 25 in December and this is well above the average over the past 20 years, the agency reported.

The index reached an all-time high of 26 in January 2000; the lowest point was in March 2013 when it registered -41. Consumer confidence has wavered between 23 and 26 for nearly 12 months.

A record number of consumers feel unemployment will ease over the next 12 months.  Nearly 65% expect joblessness to decline while only 11% feel it will increase. The balance of 53 between positive and negative responses is the highest ever recorded, the CBS said.

Last week, the International Labour Organisation said unemployment in the Netherlands had fallen further in December.

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