Most Dutch don't benefit from improving economy: study
For the second year in a row the Dutch government is giving the Budget Day message that the economic crisis is over. But the vast majority of Dutch have seen little or no improvement to their immediate environment, according to a study Ipsos did for NOS. The number of people able to easily make ends meet is even lower than last year, according to the study. Two years ago 46 percent of Dutch were able to easily make it through the month on their income, last year it increased to 56 percent. This year its back down to 50 percent. Though fewer people indicated that they are making cutbacks. 60 percent of Dutch can't notice the improving economy in their immediate surroundings, the same as last year. Just under 40 percent are noticing it a little bit, mostly due to more homes being purchased, according to NOS. And only 2 percent are seeing a strong improvement. While the Dutch are not very optimistic about the economic situation - only about 20 percent expect an improvement next year - they are much less negative about the government policy. In 2013 more than 80 percent thought that the government was making the economic situation worse. Last year that dropped to 30 percent, and this year it's just over 25 percent. Despite this, only 16 percent think the government policy is working well, compared to 19 percent last year. The Dutch public wants the government to invest more in healthcare, employment, education, security and the purchasing power of the elderly. Budget cuts can be made in development cooperation and immigration and asylum. Arts and culture can also get less money.