D.he corona pandemic has statistically increased private savings. But only a minority seems to benefit from this, especially households with above-average incomes. At least that is what an investigation by the second largest Dutch bank Rabobank in its home market suggests.
As a result of the lockdowns, private assets in the fifth largest economy in the EU rose to a record high: According to calculations by the central bank DNB, Dutch households deposited 46 billion euros on balance in accounts and savings books from March 2020 to February 2021, two and a half times the same period in the previous year and an average of 5800 euros Euro. But the majority of citizens say they do not notice it personally. Rabobank interviewed a good 1,500 Dutch people between the ages of 20 and 70. Result: a good third reported increased (35 percent) and constant (36 percent) savings. A good fifth (22 percent) saw the financial buffer shrinking, the others gave no answer.
The majority of high earners continued to save
Households with average annual incomes (36,500 to 43,500 euros gross) and those with higher incomes were disproportionately often savings winners: namely 40 and 56 percent respectively. Often, as Rabobank writes, the reason given for the accumulated record savings volume is that the pandemic has reduced spending by tens of billions of euros. But only 25 percent of those questioned reported this for themselves in the survey (a disproportionately large number among the average and high earners), and in this group the savings increased more often. According to Rabobank, spending fell in the categories “Eating and drinking out”, “Vacation”, “Transport”, “Clothing and jewelry”, “Care and health”, “Sport” and “Hobby and leisure”.
The results match the latest statements from Germany. According to the Bundesbank, the savings rate of private households rose last year from 11 to more than 16 percent, but with an uneven distribution. An online survey by the central bank showed that in the first lockdown more than 40 percent of those surveyed had lost income and assets, with income losses being more pronounced in households with low income than in those with high income. High-income households topped up their savings.
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