Dutch consumers are more positive, unemployment rate continues to fall

Photo: DutchNews.nl
Photo: DutchNews.nl

Consumers are ‘less negative’ in April than they were in March, with the consumer confidence index rising four points to -14, national statistics agency CBS said on Thursday.

And for the first time since December 2018, people were positive about the economic prospects for the next 12 months, the CBS said. They are also slightly more willing to make major purchases.

Consumer confidence reached its lowest ever point (-41) at the height of the financial crisis in March 2013.

The CBS also said that the official Dutch unemployment rate had fallen again to 3.5% in March. It rose from 2.9% to 4.6% between March and August last year, but has gone down steadily since then. The Dutch working population is officially 9.3 million.

Economists do expect unemployment to increase sharply as 2021 progresses and more companies go bust or lay off staff, because of the impact of the pandemic and the phasing out of government support measures.

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