This was revealed by a DNB study into investments made by Dutch households since January 2010, a few months before the outbreak of the debt crisis. The total value of the securities portfolio of Dutch households (investment funds, shares and debt instruments) that came to EUR 95 billion in January 2010 had dropped to EUR 88 billion in June of this year. The EUR 7 billion decline is attributable to two opposite developments. Sales of securities on balance led to a value decline of EUR 14 billion, while price gains over the same period resulted in capital growth of EUR 7 billion.
On balance, households sold debt paper and shares between January 2010 and June 2013, while they bought investment funds. Investors particularly sold debt paper issued by financial institutions. Between mid-2011 and mid-2012, net sales of securities by households accelerated slightly. Stock market sentiment picked up again from the second half of 2012 onwards, and households have kept the size of their securities holdings virtually unchanged. Since then, purchases and sales have reasonably balanced each other out (see Figure 1a).