Roundup: S.Korea's industrial output grows 1.6 pct in June

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SEOUL, July 30 (Xinhua) -- South Korea's industrial output grew in June as data had yet to reflect the negative effect of the COVID-19 resurgence here, statistical office data showed Friday.

The seasonally-adjusted production in all industries, which exclude the agricultural, forestry and fishery sector, rose 1.6 percent in June from a month earlier, according to Statistics Korea.

The industrial output was unchanged in May after sliding 1.3 percent in April. The production increased 2.0 percent in February and 0.9 percent in March respectively.

The June data did not reflect the fourth wave of COVID-19 outbreaks that began in July.

In the latest tally, the country reported 1,710 more cases of COVID-19 for the past 24 hours, lifting the total number of infections to 196,806. The daily caseload hovered above 1,000 for 24 straight days.

Minister of Economy and Finance Hong Nam-ki said the fourth resurgence appears to influence economic indicators especially for the third quarter, citing the worsened sentiment among consumers and businesses in July.

The government planned to maintain its toughest Level 4 social-distancing guideline in the Seoul metropolitan area for four weeks until Aug. 8. It was forecast to roil the services industry and the consumer spending.

Production among manufacturers gained 2.3 percent in June from a month ago, marking the first rebound in three months.

Semiconductor and automotive production advanced 8.6 percent and 6.4 percent each, but those for communication and broadcasting equipment declined 8.9 percent.

Output in the services industry expanded 1.6 percent in June after skidding 0.4 percent in the previous month.

Production in the finance and insurance sector went up 3.2 percent last month on the brisk stock transactions, and output in the wholesale and retail segment rose 1.6 percent on demand for clothing and shoes.

Output in the lodging and eatery sector picked up 2.7 percent in June on a monthly basis. Those in the construction and the public administration sectors increased 2.0 percent and 0.6 percent respectively.

The seasonally-adjusted retail sale, which reflects private consumption, advanced 1.4 percent in June from a month earlier after reducing 1.8 percent in May.

The sale of semi-durable goods spiked 5.8 percent on solid clothing demand ahead of the summer vacation season.

The non-durable goods sale added 1.0 percent on demand for medical supplies amid the continued pandemic, but the sale of durable goods such as cars diminished 1.0 percent last month.

Facility investment shrank 0.2 percent in June, keeping a downward trend for the second consecutive month.

The cyclical variation factor for leading economic indicators, which gauges outlook for the future economic situation, added 0.3 points over the month to 104.4 in June.

The reading for coincident economic indicators, which measures the current economic conditions, rose 0.1 point to 101.4 last month. Enditem

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