In the Netherlands, the cabinet will inspect shopping stores that mislead the consumer with big discounts. Both physical and online shopping stores are trying to attract more customers than usual, with the appearance of offering high discounts.
According to the new rule of the Ministry of Economy and Climate, stores have to make discounts at the lowest price they determined 30 days ago. This means that when the seller temporarily raises the price of the product and makes a discount, he will not be able to give the appearance of making more discounts.
According to Economy Minister Micky Adriaansens, the purpose of the rule is to protect both the customer against misleading discounts and the seller against unfair competition. With this rule, stores will still be able to make discounts, but the consumer will not be faced with misleading discounts.
The cabinet, on the other hand, allows progressive reduction. A progressive discount is defined for a discount where the product is initially discounted by 20 percent, then 30 percent, and then 50 percent. Products that do not remain in the market for 30 days and are quickly sold out are excluded from the rule.
It is stated that the discount rule will be valid in European Union countries from the middle of 2022.
Retail sales in the euro area fell in December
Retail sales in the euro area decreased by 2.7 percent in December compared to the previous month.
The European Statistical Office (Eurostat) has published the retail sales data of the European Union (EU) and Eurozone for December 2022.
Accordingly, retail sales in the EU decreased by 2.6 percent in December compared to the previous month and by 2.5 percent compared to the same period of the previous year.
In the euro area, retail sales decreased by 2.7 percent in December compared to November and by 2.8 percent compared to the same period of the previous year.
Thus, the average of retail sales increased by 0.7 percent in the Euro Area and by 1.1 percent in the EU in 2022 compared to the previous year.
Compared to the previous month, the highest decrease in retail sales among EU countries was seen in the Netherlands with 6.3 percent, in Germany with 5.3 percent and Luxembourg with 3.8 percent.
Retail sales fell 9.2 percent in Belgium, 8.4 percent in Denmark and 7.1 percent in Sweden on an annual basis.
Computer maker Dell to lay off about 6,650 jobs
The wave of layoffs at tech companies is growing. US-based computer manufacturer Dell is also preparing to lay off 6,500 people.
It has been reported that computer manufacturer Dell, headquartered in the USA, will join the wave of layoffs in technology companies and lay off approximately 6,650 people due to weakness in the computer market.
In a note to company employees, Dell Chief Executive Officer (CEO) Jeff Clarke stated that Dell faces market conditions that continue to erode and have an uncertain future.
Clarke stated that savings measures such as hiring interruptions and travel restrictions are no longer sufficient.
It was stated that Dell aims to lay off approximately 6,650 people, or about 5 percent of its global workforce.
After the high demand in the Kovid-19 outbreak, consumers have significantly reduced their demand for technology hardware such as smartphones and laptops, with high inflation and an uncertain economic outlook.
According to the report of the IDC research company, Dell sold 37 percent fewer computers in the last quarter of last year compared to the same period in 2021.
WAVE OF FIRMWARE IN TECHNOLOGY COMPANIES
US tech companies are experiencing a wave of layoffs after significantly increasing their staff numbers in the epidemic in recent months.
While rising inflation and a possible recession are causing concerns in the tech industry, many tech companies, especially in the US, have started to decide to lay off thousands of people or take a break from new hires last year. Among these companies, the presence of leading companies in the technology sector such as Meta and Amazon was also noteworthy.
Finally, one of the US technology giants Microsoft announced that it would lay off 10 thousand employees, and Alphabet, the parent company of Google, announced that it would lay off 12,000 employees.
Dell’s rivals HP announced that 6,000 and IBM would lay off about 3,900 of their employees.
According to the data of the Layoffs.fyi site, which tracks the layoffs in the technology sector, technology companies have laid off 292 companies and 88,138 employees since the beginning of the year.
Apple suffers biggest drop in sales since 2019
Tech giant Apple’s sales declined at the end of 2022 as the purchasing power of customers facing rising cost of living declined.
The iPhone’s manufacturer’s sales fell 5% in the last quarter of 2022 compared to the same period in 2021.
This was the biggest quarterly drop since 2019 and was worse than forecast.
The drop comes as many firms warn of a sharp economic slowdown, especially for the tech sector, which has been on the rise during the pandemic.
Apple’s CEO, Tim Cook, said the firm was operating in a “challenging environment”.
Sony raises fiscal 2022 net profit forecast
Electronics maker Sony Group has announced that its net profit for fiscal 2022 is expected to be 870 billion yen.
World-renowned technology company Sony has increased its previous 840 billion yen comprehensive net profit forecast for fiscal 2022 to 870 billion yen ($6.6 billion).
In the fiscal year, with sales revenues expected to be 11.5 trillion yen ($87.6 billion), the firm’s operating profit is targeted at 1.18 trillion yen ($9 billion). The current fiscal year 2022 will close by the end of March 2023.
In the April-December period of the fiscal year 2022, the Japanese firm’s net profit increased by 4.9 percent compared to the same period last year, to 808.9 billion yen ($6.1 billion).
OPERATING PROFIT INCREASED 1.5 PERCENT
Operating profit rose 1.5 percent to 1.08 trillion yen ($8.2 billion) during this period, when sales revenues rose 10.7 percent to 8.48 trillion yen ($64.6 billion).
Parliament approved the reduction of social housing rents to 575 euros in the Netherlands
The amendment that Housing Minister De Jonge wanted to make in the law received the support of a majority of the House of Representatives. Social housing rental costs are reduced.
The bill, which was presented by Housing Minister Hugo de Jonge in December last year, allowing low-income tenants living in social housing to reduce the rental price, was supported by the majority of the House of Representatives.
If the bill becomes law, the rental prices of households living in social housing and low income levels will be reduced to 575 euros. Households with an income of less than 120 percent of the minimum wage will benefit from this discount. (Average 2320 euros).
The discount on social housing rents will be valid for residences under 808 euros. In its current form, the law does not cover private sector housing.
The parliamentary majority supported the plan.
A majority of the House of Representatives approved the Minister’s amendment to the Housing Act. However, the opposition parties demanded that the rent reduction should not only benefit 600 thousand low-income households living in social housing, but also nearly 100 thousand households living in private sector residences.
While the parties PvdA, GroenLinks, PVV and SP demanded the Minister to make the necessary changes in the law, they stated that they will vote in favor of the law.
While the coalition partners, CDA and D66 parties, supported the inclusion of tenants in private sector residences in this law, they predicted that an average of 57 euros per month rent reduction would create technical problems. It was stated that the first of these problems was the tax system.
Most industries in the Netherlands have become dependent on immigrants
It is stated that many sectors in the Netherlands have become dependent on migrant workers and services cannot be met without foreign workers.
While many sectors in the Netherlands are dependent on a growing number of migrant workers, experts believe that services cannot be provided without foreign workers.
In the news site NU.nl, it was stated that the number of workers with a migrant background is increasing and many sectors are dependent on foreign workers.
In the news, it was stated that in the period of 2006-2021, the number of foreign workers in the country increased 4 times and approximately 800,000 migrant workers, especially from Eastern European countries, were working in the country.
A march will be held in the Netherlands for the ugly action against the Quran
Pointing out that migrant workers are employed in delivery, warehouse and distribution centers, especially in the agriculture and horticulture sector, experts’ views on the dependency of some sectors on migrant workers were included in the news.
In the news, it was shared that a large number of migrant workers, especially from Poland, Bulgaria and Romania, came to the Netherlands in the last 15 years.
Olaf van Vliet, professor of economics at Leiden University, stressed that migrant workers are especially working in low-wage jobs. “If they leave today, it will be difficult to fill their place.” used the phrase.
Pointing out that hiring foreign workers is a political decision and that it brings with it a number of social problems such as housing shortages, Van Vliet said, “If labor costs increase, consumers will feel it. For example, orders may no longer be delivered for free.” made its assessment.
“These people make a significant contribution to our economy”
Frank van Gool, director of the employment firm OTTO Work Force, stated that some sectors cannot function without migrant workers, adding, “In the absence of these, markets and vegetable stalls will remain empty. There will be problems in the health, construction and technology sectors. There are even Filipino workers in our health sector.” used the phrases.
Noting that he found it right to discuss the social problems that come with the increasing number and place of migrant workers in employment, Van Gool said, “But that doesn’t mean we don’t need those people. These people make a significant contribution to our economy.” commented.
Balance sheets of Apple, Amazon and Alphabet released
Apple’s last quarter of 2022 sales decreased by 5 percent.
Alphabet’s revenue fell short of market expectations at $76.1 billion in the last quarter of last year, while Amazon’s sales surpassed expectations at $149.2 billion in the same period.
The balance sheets of Apple, Amazon and Alphabet 2022 for the October-December period were announced.
While the revenues of US technology giants Apple and Alphabet, the parent company of Google, fell short of expectations in the October-December period of last year, Amazon’s sales exceeded market expectations in the same period.
Shares of Google, Apple and Amazon also fell sharply, while tech stocks fell in post-closing trading following the release of the balance sheets.
APPLE’S INCOME DROPPED
According to the statement made by Apple, the sales of the company, which considered the October-December period of last year as the first quarter in its balance sheet, decreased by 5 percent compared to the same period of the previous year and fell to 117.2 billion dollars. The company had revenue of $123.9 billion in the same period of 2021.
Thus, Apple experienced a year-on-year decline in sales for the first time since 2019. The company’s revenue in the same period also fell short of market expectations of $121.1 billion.
Apple’s net profit, on the other hand, decreased by 13 percent in the October-December period of 2022 compared to the same period of the previous year, falling to $ 30 billion. The company’s net profit was recorded as $34.6 billion in the same period of 2021.
The firm’s earnings per share also fell from $2.10 to $1.88 in the given period.
IPHONE AND IMAC SALES DECREASED, IPAD SALES INCREASED
In this period, while Apple’s smartphone and computer sales decreased, tablet sales increased.
In the October-December period of last year, the amount of iPhone sales decreased by 8 percent compared to the same period of the previous year and decreased to 65.8 billion dollars. In the same period, Mac sales fell 29 percent to $7.7 billion, while iPad sales increased 30 percent to $9.4 billion.
On the other hand, Apple Chief Executive (CEO), Tim Cook, in an interview with CNBC, stated that the company’s financial results were affected by the strong dollar, the overall macroeconomic environment with the Kovid-19 restrictions in China affecting iPhone 14 Pro and iPhone 14 Pro Max production.
AMAZON SALES EXCEEDED EXPECTATIONS
American e-commerce giant Amazon’s sales exceeded market expectations in the last quarter of last year.
According to the statement made by the company, Amazon’s revenue in the 4th quarter of last year increased by 9 percent compared to the same period of the previous year and reached 149.2 billion dollars. The company’s sales in the last quarter of 2021 were recorded as 137.4 billion dollars.
The firm’s sales in the last quarter of last year exceeded market expectations of $145.4 billion. Amazon’s sales rose to $514 billion in 2022, an increase of 9 percent compared to the previous year. The company’s sales were calculated at $469.8 billion in 2021.
The net profit of the company was recorded as 300 million dollars in the said period. Amazon’s net profit in the fourth quarter of 2021 was $14.3 billion.
The e-commerce giant reported a loss of $2.7 billion in 2022. Amazon made a profit of $33.4 billion in 2021. The company’s earnings per share, which was $1.39 in the fourth quarter of 2021, also fell to 3 cents in the same period last year.
ALPHABET DID NOT MEET EXPECTATIONS
Google’s parent company Alphabet also increased its revenue in the last quarter of last year, while its profits fell.
According to the company statement, Alphabet’s revenue in the fourth quarter of last year increased by 1 percent compared to the same period of the previous year, reaching $ 76.1 billion. The company announced revenue of $ 75.3 billion in the October-December period of 2021.
Alphabet’s revenue fell short of market expectations of $76.5 billion despite the limited increase in the period in question. The company’s revenue reached $282.8 billion in 2022, an increase of 10 percent compared to the previous year. Alphabet’s revenue was estimated at $257.6 billion in 2021.
Alphabet’s net profit, on the other hand, fell 34% year-on-year to $13.6 billion in the last quarter of last year. The company had a net profit of $20.6 billion in the fourth quarter of 2021.
The company’s net profit in 2022 was $59.9 billion. The company reported a profit of $76 billion in 2021. Alphabet’s earnings per share, which was $1.53 in the fourth quarter of 2021, also fell to $1.05 in the same period last year.
Inflation continues to fall in the Netherlands: January inflation is 7.6%
Inflation fell to 7.6% last month, according to the Dutch Statistical Institute’s (CBS) preliminary estimate.
Since February last year, life was rapidly becoming more expensive. In September, inflation peaked at 14.5%. But over the last few months, prices have risen a little less sharply.
January was the fourth month in a row that inflation fell compared to the previous month. This is entirely due to gas, electricity and gasoline prices, which rose last year but have fallen recently.
The fall in inflation has not yet been reflected in supermarkets.
In order to make a good comparison with other European countries, CBS presented, among other things, inflation figures calculated according to the European harmonized method, which does not take into account housing rents. According to this method, inflation, which was 11% in December, was stated as 8.4% in January.
CBS noted that this is a quick initial estimate. Final figures will be announced by the Statistics office later this month.
8% increase in minimum wage in Spain
Spanish Prime Minister Pedro Sanchez announced that by increasing the minimum wage by 8 percent, the minimum wage, which is currently 1000 euros per month and will be paid 14 times a year with bonuses, will be increased to 1080 euros.
Spanish Prime Minister Sanchez, in his speech in the Senate to explain the social and economic effects of the Ukraine-Russia war, announced the minimum wage increase as 8 percent.
Reminding that the minimum wage was 735 euros in 2018, the year they first came to power, Sanchez underlined that they have decided to raise 36 percent in total with the increase they have made every year.
“With this new hike, we have increased the minimum wage to 60 percent of the average Spanish salary,” Sanchez said. Thus, we have fulfilled our democratic obligation towards our workers and our commitment in the legislative process.” said.
Since the socialist government came to power, the minimum wage, which is paid 14 times a year, with bonuses twice a year, has been increased to 764 euros in 2018, 900 euros in 2019, 950 in 2020, 965 euros in 2021 and 1000 euros in 2022.
CRITICAL TO COMPANIES THAT DISCLOSE HIGH PROFITS
Sanchez also pointed out that the purchasing power of Spaniards has decreased greatly in recent years, and criticized the big companies that declared high profits by making profit distribution only to senior managers.
Prime Minister Sanchez said:
“In the last 10 years, the average price increase in the products purchased by Spaniards has been 17.6 percent, while the rate of increase in the employees of companies in the private sector remained at 10.6 percent. This is unacceptable. In 1999, a Spaniard could buy a house equal to the sum of his 4 years’ salary. Now they cannot buy a house even with a total salary of 8 years. I think this is not fair. Why are the profits distributed to a few people? That needs to be changed.”
There are more than 2.5 million minimum wage workers in Spain.
On the other hand, Deputy Prime Minister and Minister of Labor Yolanda Diaz had invited union leaders and the President of the Spanish Confederation of Industrialists and Employers, Antonio Garamendi, to a meeting this morning to determine the minimum wage increase.
Garamendi did not attend the meeting on the grounds that the government did not forward its proposal for a minimum wage increase to them and did not respond to their written requests.
Albert Nunez Feijoo, leader of the main opposition right-wing People’s Party (PP), accused Prime Minister Sanchez of “lying to the Spaniards by hiding the country’s truth”.
Feijoo said, “While the government shows its economic steps as a victory, Spain is the country with the highest increase in foreign debt among EU countries, the last country to reach the Gross Domestic Product before Kovid-19 and the highest unemployment rate in the EU. told.
In the last general elections held in Spain in 2019, the Socialist Workers Party (PSOE) led by Sanchez and the ultra-leftist Unidas Podemos formed a coalition government with the outside support of the separatist Basque and Catalan parties in the parliament.
Although the latest polls in Spain, where the general election will be held in November under normal circumstances, show PSOE as the party that will win the elections, it is commented that the PP and the far-right Vox party will capture the necessary majority to form the government.
At least 600,000 households in the Netherlands suffer from high energy costs
600,000 households in the Netherlands live in energy poverty. The main reasons for this are rising energy costs, poor insulation and low income.
If a household has to live on minimum wage or benefits, even a small increase in energy prices can cause payment problems, and the problem is exacerbated when you add living in poorly insulated housing. In such a situation, households have to cope with “energy poverty”.
Research organization TNO published the report “Energy poverty in the Netherlands 2022”. According to the report, it was stated that more than 600,000 households lived in energy poverty last year. In other words, the energy costs of hundreds of thousands of households have increased, besides, the insulation of the houses is very bad and the people living in these houses are generally low-income.
Without the government’s support, the figure would have reached millions!
According to the figures announced by TNO, while 510 thousand households in the country had to cope with energy poverty two years ago, this figure increased to at least 600 thousand households last year. According to TNO, the increase would have been much higher had it not been for the government’s energy assistance.
TNO, who reached this conclusion by comparing the data of the Central Bureau of Statistics (CBS) in 2020 with the high energy prices in 2022, states that the energy incentives given last year and the data obtained with energy savings are also used in the calculations.
Peter Mulder, one of the researchers at the institution, stated that the energy aid provided brakes on the increase in the number of energy poor houses, and said that “if it were not for the financial support of the government, the number of energy poor households would have increased by two compared to 2020 and exceeded one million.”
Two-thirds of energy-poor households belong to home offices
More than two-thirds of energy-poor households are home office-owned residences, according to TNO figures. Nearly 20 percent of energy-poor homes are private sector rentals, and around 12 percent are purchased homes.
Most residents of low-energy-label households are single-person households and single-parent families. 19 percent of those living in an energy-poor house in 2020 and 33 percent in 2022 consist of families with children.
According to the study, most of the households affected by energy poverty are located in the eastern and northeastern parts of the country and in major cities. Energy poverty is particularly prevalent in Noordoost-Groningen, Zuid-Limburg, Rotterdam, Den Haag, Arnhem and its environs, as well as in Almelo and Enschede.
Mulder explains that “there are relatively many low-income households in these areas and their homes are poorly insulated. This is not a good combination at all with high energy prices.”
Energy poor households spent an average of 12.7 percent of their income on energy costs last year, up from 9 percent in 2020, according to the TNO study. In other words, while energy-poor households paid 65 euros more than the monthly average in 2020, they had to pay 190 euros more than usual in 2022. It is estimated that the increase in the cost of the invoice could reach an average of 260 euros without government support.
The researchers noted that in the Netherlands overall, households spent 4.2 percent of their income on energy costs in 2020, but last year, the bill paid for energy increased to 7.8 percent of income.
The only solution is to increase sustainability
According to researcher Peter Mulder, the only way out of this situation is to increase the sustainability of residences, especially rental homes with low energy labels.
According to the researcher, there are 415,000 energy-poor houses with F and G labels. These houses can only be heated at great cost. He states that insulating these houses will enable the person living in that house to save money, improve his health, and thus reduce the health costs.