Dutch consumer confidence in February was down 3 points on January. Such a drop is not unusual for the time of the year. Therefore the seasonally corrected figure remains unchanged.
This means the recovery that started in the last months of 2001 did not continue. In the first half of 2001 consumer confidence fell sharply, but it stabilised in the second half of the year. The willingness to purchase in February was slightly lower than in January. Consumers were a bit more positive about the economic climate, according to the latest figures by Statistics Netherlands.
Less willingness to purchase
Consumer willingness to purchase among was down slightly in February. In January it was already down on the previous month. Willingness to purchase is the lowest since December 1996. It is one of the two aspects that make up the consumer confidence index. Willingness to purchase is based on the consumers opinions about their financial situation and about making major purchases. The drop in February was mainly due to the less positive opinion consumers have about their own financial situation.
More positive about the economic climate
The seasonally corrected figure on consumer confidence in the economic climate in February was slightly more positive than in January. The recovery continued in this aspect of consumer confidence. The dip came after the terrorist attacks in the USA in September last year. The number of consumers who expect an increase in unemployment went down again in February. The number of households foreseeing less inflation is on the increase.
(source: Statistics Netherlands)