Netherlands economy ticks up, more jobs open up

The Dutch economy saw a very slight improvement in the third quarter, growing by 0.1 percent compared to the second quarter. Compared to the third quarter of 2014, the economy crew by 1.9 percent. The number of jobs and vacancies also picked up in the third quarter 2015.

This is according to figures Statistics Netherlands released on Friday. This is the sixth consecutive quarter that the Dutch economy has shown growth. The economic growth can be attributed to higher investment, more export and more consumption by consumers and the government. As in the previous quarter, the limit on gas production stunted the growth by about 0.5 percent.

The volume of product exports was 1.4 percent higher in September this year than in the same month in 2014. The growth was much lower than in previous months, though Statistics Netherlands expects to see a pickup again in October and November. In September mainly exports of transport equipment and petroleum products saw growth. The volume of imports was 6.2 percent higher in September than a year earlier.

The third quarter also brought some good news for the unemployed. Both the number of jobs and the number of vacancies increased. The number of jobs increased by 33 thousand, mostly attributable to an increase in temporary contracts. The number of vacancies increased by a thousand, bringing the total up to 132 thousand at the end of September. The unemployment rate was slightly lower, tho the number of unemployed showed a slight increase in August and September.

Entrepreneurs have upbeat expectations for next year. For the first time in five years, more employers expect an increase in employment opportunities in their company than a decrease. 18 percent expect to see an increase and 13 percent expect a decrease. Entrepreneurs in all sectors also expect an increase in turnover next year. Like last year, entrepreneurs expect a growth in foreign sales and investments.

Entrepreneurs confidence was slightly lower at the start of the fourth quarter than in the third quarter, but remained positive. The confidence indicator has now been positive for two consecutive years.