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Malaysia's February export growth seen slowing to 8.3%: poll

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Malaysia's export growth is expected to have risen at a much slower annual pace in February than the previous month, a Reuters poll showed, although analysts warned that the data may be distorted by the timing of the Chinese New Year holiday.

[KUALA LUMPUR] Malaysia's export growth is expected to have risen at a much slower annual pace in February than the previous month, a Reuters poll showed, although analysts warned that the data may be distorted by the timing of the Chinese New Year holiday.

The median forecast in a survey of 12 economists was for February's exports to expand 8.3 per cent from a year earlier, sharply down from the 17.9 per cent rise in January.

Individual estimates ranged between a growth of 2 per cent and 9.8 per cent.

"We expect the timing difference in the Lunar New Year - which fell in January last year but in February this year - to have dragged down the year-on-year headline print in February," an economist at Standard Chartered said in a note.

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Imports likely grew 7.1 per cent year-on-year in February, down from 11.6 per cent the previous month.

Malaysia reports trade data in ringgit .

February's trade surplus is expected to narrow slightly to 9.3 billion ringgit (S$3.2 billion), from 9.7 billion ringgit in January.

REUTERS