Dutch Economy in Focus – Estimates up after GDP revision

by: Philip Bokeloh

The Dutch economy is going from strength to strength. Revised data show GDP growing faster than thought in the first quarter. The figures for the third and fourth quarters of 2014 have also been adjusted upwards. This upward momentum has prompted us to raise our GDP estimates. The optimism-inspiring economic figures provide further support for this step. Entrepreneurs are looking to the future with confidence. High capacity utilisation rates are encouraging them to invest again. The recovery of business investments is most visible in residential construction. The more vigorous investment dynamics are giving the labour market a boost. Falling unemployment and the better prospects of finding a job are making consumers more confident. Their optimism is further reinforced by the ongoing revival of the housing market. Higher domestic demand paves the way for rising inflation. Moreover, the upturn in economic activity will also generate extra tax revenues. Against this, there will be lower income from natural gas, so that the deficit reduction will remain limited. But it is still heartening to see public debt falling as a percentage of GDP for the first time since 2007.