Thursday, March 19, 2015 - 14:48
Consumer confidence positive for first time since econ. crisis
Consumer confidence in the Netherlands is positive for the first time since 2007, reports Statistics Netherlands (CBS). The percentage difference between positive and negative responses is at 2 percent, as opposed to -7% in February. There is also a significant increase in the general level of confidence in the economic climate. The indicator for March is at 15%, as opposed to -5% last month. The willingness to spend money is slightly less negative in March, rising to -7 percent. Consumers are also less negative about employment prospects. Feelings of job security is a crucial element in the willingness to spend, the CBS says. Approximately 33 percent of the respondents expect the unemployment rate to fall in the near future. This is the most optimistic response in four years. The CBS also announced today that unemployment fell in February, though this was largely due to a decline in workforce. The current level of confidence is well above the twenty-year average of -8%. The lowest point was reached in February 2013 (-44%).