In these European countries, unemployment has been partially prevented due to wage subsidies for companies, but the exact terms of this wage subsidy differ from country to country. “In the Netherlands, employees who get paid through wage subsidies receive their full salaries,” says Wijffelaars. “The Spaniard gets only 70 percent. That will make a difference to the recovery of the economy, because it means these Spaniards have less money to spend.”
Consumer spending should, among other things, help the global economy recover in the near future. This works as a kind of aggregate: the more we spend, the more companies sell, the more investments that can make them more productive, making the economy grow faster – that’s the idea.
Wijffelaars is confident in the recovery of the economy in the Netherlands, partly due to the fact that we are again often in places where we can spend money. You can see that in the chart below. “We are still going, for example, to cinemas, malls and restaurants less than it was before the crisis, but you can see a clear recovery since mid-April. This data says something about the short term only, but I expect that to continue.”