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Economists again temper 2016 Singapore growth expectations to 1.8%

Wednesday, June 15, 2016 - 12:13
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The Singapore economy is expected to expand just 1.8 per cent this year, according to private-sector economists polled by the Monetary Authority of Singapore (MAS) - representing yet another trimming of growth forecasts.

THE Singapore economy is expected to expand just 1.8 per cent this year, according to private-sector economists polled by the Monetary Authority of Singapore (MAS) - representing yet another trimming of growth forecasts.

Analysts had earlier expected gross domestic product (GDP) to expand 1.9 per cent - itself a step down from a previous estimate of 2.2 per cent.

The central bank's quarterly poll was sent out on May 25, and received views from 22 respondents.

The 2016 median forecasts pencil in worse showings in the finance & insurance and wholesale & retail trade sectors. These are expected to grow 2.9 per cent and 2 per cent respectively, versus earlier projections of 3.6 per cent and 3.9 per cent.

However, a contraction is no longer expected in the manufacturing sector; while economists had previously seen a decline of 2.7 per cent, they now expect growth to be flat.

On the inflation front, headline inflation is seen at -0.4 per cent this year, versus -0.2 per cent in the March survey.

There is no change to the core inflation outlook, which stands at 0.8 per cent. Core inflation strips out the costs of accommodation and private road transport.