Dutch Economy Shrinks 0.1% In Q1

The Dutch economy contracted in the first quarter after recovering in the previous quarter, preliminary data from the Central Bureau of Statistics showed on Wednesday.

Gross domestic product dropped 0.1 percent sequentially in the March quarter, reversing a 0.3 percent rise in the fourth quarter.

The slight decline in GDP in the first quarter was mainly attributable to the export of goods and to a greater withdrawal from inventories, the agency said.

On the expenditure side, household consumption grew 0.7 percent over the quarter as consumers spent more on clothing, shoes, and flying holidays.

Government consumption increased by 0.6 percent, and investments in fixed assets advanced by 0.4 percent.

Meanwhile, exports of goods and services fell 0.1 percent and imports remained flat. As a result, the trade balance made a negative contribution to GDP development. The decline in export goods was related to the contraction of industry.

Separate official data showed that the decline in annual exports moderated to 5.9 percent in March from 7.0 percent in February. Exports have been falling since June 2023. Exports of food, beverages, tobacco, chemical products, electrical products, and machines in particular were lower than a year earlier.

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