Dutch economy to grow less than expected in 2017: ING economists

The Dutch economy will show solid growth again this year, though it will be weaker than in 2016, ING's Economic Bureau predicts in estimates published on Friday. The bank expects 1.6 percent growth this year, compared to 2.2 percent last year, ANP reports.

The lower growth can partly be attributed to the housing market downshifting compared to the buoyant growth in the past few years. Turbulent world trade is also expected to lower exports this year. 

The ING expectations is more gloomy than that of the Central Planning Bureau, which expects 2.1 percent economic growth in 2017. 

According to ING, the economic growth will continue to be boosted by consumers, thanks to increasing purchasing power and continued low inflation. Consumption is expected to increase by nearly 2 percent this year, which will boost economic growth in 2018. The economists expects the Dutch economy to grow by 1.9 percent next year.

Unemployment will drop to 5.2 percent of the labor force this year and to below 5 percent in 2018, the economists predict. In 2016 unemployment averaged at 6 percent.