The South Korean economy advanced by 2.4 percent year-on-year in the first quarter of 2015, according to preliminary estimates. It is the lowest growth rate since the third quarter of 2013, as an increase in investment and consumption was not enough to offset a negative contribution from net exports.
Gross fixed capital formation grew by 2.5 percent in the three months to March, following a 0.7 percent expansion in the December quarter. Construction investment rose by 0.7 percent, rebounding from a 1.5 percent contraction in the preceding period. Facilities investment advanced by 5.7 percent, following a 4.2 percent expansion in Q4 and intellectual property products grew by 2.0 percent, following a 1.1 percent expansion in the previous quarter.
Final consumption expanded by 1.9 percent year-on-year, after registering a 1.8 percent growth in the December quarter. Private consumption rose by 1.5 percent (from 1.4 percent growth in the previous quarter). Meanwhile, government consumption grew by 3.1 percent, the same pace as in the fourth quarter of 2014.
Exports were flat, following a 1.4 percent rise in Q4. Meanwhile, imports rose by 1.8 percent, markedly increasing from 0.1 percent growth in the December quarter.
For 2015 the Bank of Korea trimmed its growth forecast to 3.1 percent . In 2014, the economy expanded by 3.3 percent, following a revised 2.9 percent growth in 2013.
On a quarter-on-quarter basis, the economy grew by 0.8 percent, accelerating from a 0.3 percent expansion in the previous quarter.
4/23/2015 12:25:30 PM