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Economic Trends
Current Economic Trends

In August, industrial and services production, facility investment and construction investment rose while retail sales fell. In September, job growth was even stronger while consumer prices rose at a faster pace. In August, all industry production grew 2.2 percent month-on-month (up 1.5% y-o-y) as industrialproduction (up 5.5% m-o-m and down 0.5% y-o-y) and services production (up 0.3% m-o-m and up1.7% y-o-y) climbed from a month earlier. In August, facility investment (up 3.6% m-o-m and down 14.9% y-o-y) and construction investment(up 4.4% m-o-m and up 12.3% y-o-y) rose month-on-month, while retail sales (down 0.3% m-o-m anddown 4.8% y-o-y) fell. In September, exports declined at a slower pace (from down 8.4% to down 4.4% y-o-y) than theprevious month thanks to the upturn in semiconductors and exports to China. Average daily exportsfell by 2.1 percent from a year ago to US $2.60 billion. In September, the consumer sentiment index (CSI) fell by 3.4 points month-on-month to 99.7. Thebusiness survey index (BSI) for all industries increased 2 points from a month ago to 73 and the BSIoutlook for October remained unchanged at 73. In August, the cyclical indicator of the coincident composite index decreased by 0.2 points month-on month, and the cyclical indicator of the leading composite index remained steady. In September, the economy added 309 thousand jobs year-on-year and the unemployment rate fell 0.1percentage points to 2.3 percent. In September, consumer prices rose at a faster pace (from up 3.4% to up 3.7% y-o-y), the CPI excludingthe food and energy sectors rose by 3.3 percent, and the index excluding the agricultural and petroleumproducts rose by 3.8 percent. The index of the cost of basic necessities rose by 4.4 percent. In September, stock prices fell, the won weakened and Korean Treasury bond yields rose amidconcerns about the Feds prolonged monetary tightening. In September, housing prices rose faster (from up 0.16% to up 0.25% m-o-m) and Jeonse (lump-sumdeposits with no monthly payments) prices continued to rise (from up 0.15% to up 0.32% m-o-m). Amid recent moderation in inflation, uncertainties still surround the Korean economy. Rebounds in production and exports are expected, particularly in manufacturing sectors suchas semiconductors, while the ongoing improvement in services and employment has led to agradual easing of the economic slowdown. Internationally, alongside the anticipations for the global IT industrys rebound and a surge in Chinesetourists, concerns remain over the prolonged monetary tightening. At the same time, uncertaintieslinger as the political unrest in the Middle East in addition to the Russia-Ukraine war exacerbatesvolatile commodity prices. The government plans to meticulously manage risks at home and abroad, aiming to firmly establish thefoundation for achieving stability of households livelihoods while ramping up the countrys domesticconsumption, investment and exports as well as improving its economic structure. * For further details, please refer to the attached file

Nov 2023
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