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2019 ECONOMIC POLICIES
PRESS CENTER
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Current Economic Situation, February 2020

  • DivisionEconomic Policy Bureau - Economic Analysis Division
  • DateFebruary 14, 2020
  • Tel0442152730

Current Economic Situation, February 2020

 

Industrial Production Improves Backed by Manufacturing,

Services Slowing Somewhat

 

 

Mining and manufacturing, retail sales, facilities investment and construction investment improved in December 2019.  Services slowed somewhat.

 

Industrial production rose 1.4 percent from the previous month in December due to strong mining and manufacturing (up 3.5%, m-o-m and up 4.2%, y-o-y).  Services edged down (down 0.1%, m-o-m and up 2.8%, y-o-y).  Industrial production rose 3.2 percent year on year.

 

Retail sales (up 0.3%, m-o-m and up 4.6%, y-o-y), facilities investment (up 10.9%, m-o-m and up 11.1%, y-o-y) and construction investment (up 4.1%, m-o-m and down 2.1%, y-o-y) all improved from the previous month in December.

 

Exports continued to decline in January 2020, going down 6.1 percent year-on-year.  The decline, however, was due to fewer days worked (2.5 days).  Average daily exports, an indicator calculated according to the days worked, improved (US $1.92 billion (Jan 2019) US $2.02 billion (Jan 2020).

 

The consumer sentiment index (CSI) rose 3.7 points in January 2020 to 104.2.  The business sentiment index (BSI) for the manufacturing sector increased 2 points to 76, the outlook for February improving 4 points to 77. 

 

The cyclical indicator of the coincident composite index in December improved 0.2 points to 99.5, and the cyclical indicator of the leading composite index rose 0.4 points to 99.6.

 

The economy added 568,000 jobs year-on-year in January 2020 backed by the service sector.  The unemployment rate fell 0.4 percentage points from a year ago to 4.1 percent.

 

Consumer prices rose 1.5 percent year-on-year in January 2020.  Fresh food prices turned to an increase, petroleum prices staying on an upward track.  Core inflation rose 0.9 percent.

 

KOSPI fell in January 2020.  The won weakened and Korea treasury yields declined. 

 

In January 2020, housing prices continued to rise (up 0.38% up 0.28%, m-o-m), as well as Jeonse (lump-sum deposits with no monthly payments) prices (up 0.22% up 0.28%, m-o-m).

 

The economy has been recovering.  Production, consumption and facilities investment rose in the fourth quarter of 2019, and the cyclical indicators of both the coincident composite and leading composite indexes improved in December. 

 

Although there are signs of global economic recovery, such as rising DRAM contract prices in January, uncertainties remain in the economy as to how COVID-19 will influence the global economy, including the Chinese economy.

 

The government will continue to work to thoroughly control the disease and provide support for businesses affected by the COVID-19 outbreak.  The government will work to successfully implement measures planned in the 2020 economic policies, those aimed at the economy’s gaining recovery momentum through increased investment, consumption and exports.  

 

 

Key Statistics

 

Employment

 

 

2017

2018

2019

2020

Annual

Annual

Q1

Q2

Q3

Q4

Annual

Q1

Jan

Q2

Q3

Q4

Dec

Jan

Number of employed (million)

26.73

26.82

26.28

27.02

27.02

26.97

27.12

26.46

26.23

27.26

27.38

27.39

27.15

26.80

Employment rate (%)

60.8

60.7

59.6

61.2

61.1

60.9

60.9

59.6

59.2

61.3

61.5

61.4

60.8

60.0

(Seasonally adjusted)

60.8

60.7

60.8

60.7

60.6

60.7

60.9

60.8

60.7

60.8

60.9

61.2

61.3

61.6

                               

 

 

Consumer Price Index

 

(%)

 

2019

2020

Jan

Feb

Mar

Apr

May

Jun

Jul

Aug

Sep

Oct

Nov

Dec

Jan

y-o-y

0.8

0.5

0.4

0.6

0.7

0.7

0.6

0.0

-0.4

0.0

0.2

0.7

1.5

m-o-m

-0.1

0.4

-0.2

0.4

0.2

-0.2

-0.3

0.2

0.4

0.2

-0.6

0.2

0.6

 

 

Mining and Manufacturing

 

(Percentage change from the previous period, %)

Mining and Manufacturing2

2018

2019

Annual

Q4

Dec

Annual

Q1

Q2

Q3

Q4¹

Nov¹

Dec¹

Mining

(q-o-q,

m-o-m)

-

-1.5

-0.8

-

-2.9

1.4

2.0

0.3

-0.5

3.5

(y-o-y)

1.3

4.3

0.7

-0.7

-2.1

-0.7

-0.7

0.6

-0.2

4.2

Manufacturing

Production

(q-o-q,

m-o-m)

-

-1.4

-0.9

-

-3.0

1.6

1.9

0.6

-0.7

3.8

(y-o-y)

1.2

4.6

1.2

-0.7

-2.1

-0.8

-0.6

0.8

0.0

4.8

Inventory³

8.0

5.7

-2.7

-1.8

-1.6

3.2

0.9

-3.8

-1.1

-2.7

Shipments

-0.2

-1.5

-1.6

-1.0

-1.9

0.0

2.7

-0.6

-1.7

4.5

Average operation ratio

73.5

73.1

72.2

72.9

71.8

72.3

74.6

73.1

71.9

74.3

Production capacity (y-o-y)

-0.2

-0.3

-0.3

-1.2

-0.4

-1.1

-1.8

-1.3

-1.0

-0.9

1. Preliminary

2. Including mining, manufacturing, and electricity and gas supply

3. End-period

Service Output

 

(Percentage change from the previous period, %)

 

2017

2018

2019

Annual

Annual

Q1

Q2

Q3

Q4

Annual¹

Q1

Q2

Q3

Q4¹

Nov¹

Dec¹

Service output

1.9

2.1

0.9

0.4

0.3

0.4

1.5

0.3

0.0

0.8

0.8

1.4

-0.1

1. Preliminary

 

 

Retail Sales

 

(Percentage change from the previous period, %)

 

2017

2018

2019

Annual

Annual

Q1

Q2

Q3

Q4

Annual¹

Q1

Q2

Q3

Q4¹

Nov¹

Dec¹

Retail sales

1.9

4.3

2.1

0.6

-0.2

-0.1

2.4

1.3

1.0

0.2

1.2

3.1

0.3

y-o-y

-

-

5.3

5.0

 3.8

 3.0

-

1.7

2.0

2.3

 3.4

3.6

4.6

1. Preliminary

 

 

Facility Investment Index

 

(Percentage change from the previous period, %)

 

2017

2018

2019

Annual

Annual

Q1

Q2

Q3

Q4

Annual¹

Q1

Q2

Q3

Oct

Nov¹

Dec¹

Facility investment index

14.5

-3.5

6.0

-8.7

-5.4

-1.1

-7.6

-5.4

1.2

1.2

-0.5

0.8

10.9

y-o-y

-

-

10.6

-4.8

-11.8

-6.6

-

-19.6

-8.7

-3.7

-3.5

-0.1

11.1

1. Preliminary

 

 

Construction Completed

 

(Percentage change from the previous period, %)

 

2017

2018

2019

Annual

Annual

Q1

Q2

Q3

Q4

Annual¹

Q1

Q2

Q3

Oct

Nov¹

Dec¹

Construction completed (constant)

10.5

-5.3

0.8

-4.1

-3.8

-3.7

-6.7

1.8

-1.8

-4.3

2.7

-2.1

4.1

y-o-y

-

-

0.8

-3.5

-9.7

-7.9

-

-9.5

-6.4

-7.9

-3.5

-4.8

-2.1

 1. Preliminary

 

 

Composite Indices of Coincident and Leading Indicators

 

 

2019

May

Jun

Jul

Aug

Sep

Oct¹

Nov¹

Dec¹

Cyclical indicator of coincident composite index

99.5

99.4

99.3

99.5

99.5

99.4

99.3

99.5

m-o-m (points)

0.3

-0.1

-0.1

0.2

0.0

-0.1

-0.1

0.2

Cyclical indicator of leading composite index

98.9

98.7

98.4

98.3

98.5

98.8

99.2

99.6

m-o-m (points)

-0.1

-0.2

-0.3

-0.1

0.2

0.3

0.4

0.4

1. Preliminary

 

Exports and Imports

 

(US$ billion, y-o-y, %)

 

2017

2018

2019

2020

Annual

Annual

Annual

Q1

Jan

Q2

Q3

Q4

Nov

Dec

Jan¹

Exports

573.69

604.86

542.33

132.66

46.17

138.50

134.75

136.43

44.05

45.71

43.35

(y-o-y, %)

15.8

5.4

-10.3

-8.5

-6.2

-8.7

-12.3

-11.7

-14.4

-5.2

-6.1

Average daily exports

2.13

2.24

1.99

2.03

1.92

2.02

1.95

1.96

1.87

1.99

2.02

Imports

478.48

535.20

503.26

123.73

45.13

128.78

124.94

125.81

40.72

43.70

42.73

(y-o-y, %)

17.8

11.9

-6.0

-6.6

-1.5

-3.3

-4.1

-9.7

-13.0

-0.7

-5.3

Average daily imports

1.78

1.98

1.85

1.89

1.88

1.88

1.81

1.81

1.73

1.90

1.99

1. Preliminary

 

Please refer to the attached pdf

 

Ministry of Economy and Finance
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