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Korea Business Confidence May 2024

Korea: Business confidence among manufacturing firms picks up in May

Manufacturing firms’ outlook on business conditions for May rose to 74.0 from April’s 73.0. Despite the uptick, the index remained below the 100-threshold separating pessimism from optimism among businesses.

The uptick was due to a rosier outlook among export-oriented firms, against a backdrop of booming AI demand and an upcycle in the global electronics sector. Domestically-oriented firms’ outlook was unchanged, and more downbeat than that of export-oriented firms. This is likely linked to historically high interest rates and price pressures.

Our panelists see only mild fixed investment growth this year, with downbeat sentiment among firms likely partly to blame.

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