S’PORE NARROWLY AVOIDS RECESSION AS ECONOMY GREW 1.4% IN 3RD QUARTER

The Ministry of Trade and Industry (MTI) announced that Singapore’s economy expanded by 1.4% in the third quarter of this year as compared to 2014. This was down from the 2% growth seen from the previous quarter. The figures beat expectations of a 0.1% contraction and avoided a technical recession which was predicted by many analyst.

The manufacturing sector contracted by 6 per cent on a year-on-year basis in the third quarter, following the 4.9 per cent decline in the previous quarter. The contraction was largely due to a fall in the output of the electronics, biomedical manufacturing and transport engineering clusters.

On a quarter-on-quarter basis, the sector contracted 3.6 per cent, following the 17.4 per cent contraction in the second quarter, MTI said.

The construction sector expanded by 1.6 per cent, down from the 2 per cent growth recorded in the previous quarter. The slowdown was mainly due to weaker private sector construction activities, according to the press release.

On a quarter-on-quarter seasonally-adjusted annualised basis, the sector contracted by 0.8 per cent, a reversal from the 12.4 per cent expansion in the previous quarter.

Growth in the services producing industries came in at 3 per cent, slower than the 3.6 per cent growth in the previous quarter, largely due to a slower pace of expansion in the wholesale and retail trade and finance and insurance sectors, MTI said.

On a quarter-on-quarter basis, the services producing industries expanded at an annualised rate of 0.8 per cent, an improvement from the 0.2 per cent expansion in the previous quarter.

MTI will release the preliminary GDP estimates for the third quarter, including performance by sectors, sources of growth, inflation, employment and productivity, next month.

In a press release on Wednesday morning, the Monetary Authority of Singapore announced that it would ease monetary policy slightly by slowing the pace of the Singapore dollar’s appreciation.

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