- The Green Book: Current Economic Trends
Mining and manufacturing improved from the previous month in March, as well as facilities investment and construction investment. Service output and retail sales slowed down.
Industrial production fell 0.3 percent from the previous month in March. Mining and manufacturing rose (up 4.6%, m-o-m and up 7.1%, y-o-y), while service output fell (down 4.4%, m-o-m and down 5.0%, y-o-y). Industrial production rose 0.6 percent year on year.
Retail sales went down in March (down 1.0%, m-o-m and down 8.0%, y-o-y), and facilities investment (up 7.9%, m-o-m and up 9.8%, y-o-y) and construction investment (up 2.6%, m-o-m and up 1.5%, y-o-y) improved.
Exports fell 24.3 percent year-on-year in April due to weak demand and production disruption, as well as falling oil prices and fewer days worked (2 days). Average daily exports, an indicator calculated according to the days worked, fell (US $2.03 billion (Apr 2019) → US $1.68 billion (Apr 2020)).
The consumer sentiment index (CSI) dropped 7.6 points in April to 70.8. The business sentiment index (BSI) for the manufacturing sector fell 4 points to 52, and the BSI outlook for May went down 4 points to 50.
The cyclical indicator of the coincident composite index for March fell 1.2 points to 98.6, and the cyclical indicator of the leading composite index dropped 0.6 points to 99.6.
The economy lost 476,000 jobs year-on-year in April due to weak services and manufacturing. The unemployment rate fell 0.2 percentage points from a year ago to 4.2 percent.
Consumer prices rose 0.1 percent year-on-year in April due to low oil product and public service prices. Fresh food prices grew slowly. Core inflation rose 0.3 percent.
KOSPI rose in April with confirmed cases of COVID-19 declining. The won strengthened somewhat and Korea treasury yields fell.
The economy has seen domestic demand declining and employment falling amid the COVID-19 pandemic. Exports continued to slow down.
Volatility in global financial markets has eased as economic activities resume in major countries, but worries linger over global recession, major countries’ economic indicators not yet picking up and uncertainties surrounding emerging economies.
The government will do its utmost to fast overcome the effect of the pandemic, including shocks to the job market. The Central Economic Response Headquarters, a ministerial-level meeting, will ensure close ministerial cooperation.
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