South Korean GDP Growth Highest Since Q3 2014


The South Korean economy advanced 3.1 percent year-on-year in the last quarter of 2015, following an upwardly revised 2.8 percent expansion in the previous period and beating a flash estimate of 3 percent growth. It was the highest expansion since the third quarter of 2014, mainly due to increases in private and government consumption. For the whole of 2015, South Korea's GDP rose 2.6 percent compared to a gain of 3.3 percent in 2014.

On the expenditure side, private consumption expanded by 3.3 percent (+2.2 percent in Q3) and government spending grew by 3.9 percent (+3 percent in Q3). Construction investment advanced 7.5 percent (+5.6 percent in Q3). Meanwhile, exports of goods and services were up by 2.5 percent (+0.5 percent in Q3) while imports rose at a faster 6.1 percent (+3.1 percent in Q3).

For the whole of 2015, South Korea's GDP rose 2.6 percent compared to a gain of 3.3 percent in 2014. Private consumption grew by 2.2 percent in 2015. While the growth of semi-durable goods and services expenditure showed a sluggish pace, the consumption of durable goods expanded significantly. Gross fixed capital formation rose by 3.8 percent. Construction investment increased by 3.9 percent, mainly owing to the growth of residential building construction. Facilities investment grew by 5.3 percent, driven by transportation equipment investment. Intellectual property products investment increased by 1.5 percent. Exports of goods & services went up by 0.8 percent, led by the growth in exports of petroleum products, and miscellaneous services. 

On the production side, agriculture, forestry & fishing declined by 1.5 percent in 2015, mainly due to a drought. Manufacturing showed a slower increase of 1.3 percent. While the growth of petroleum products expanded, electronic and electrical equipment showed a sluggish growth rate. Construction rose by 3.0 percent. While civil engineering decreased by 2.9 percent, building construction increased centering around residential building construction. Services showed an expansion of 2.8 percent, as growth in wholesale and retail trade, finance and insurance increased. The growth of restaurants and hotels shifted to negative.

South Korean GDP Growth Highest Since Q3 2014


Bank of Korea l Joana Ferreira | joana.ferreira@tradingeconomics.com
3/24/2016 11:31:19 PM