Korea Industry March 2019


Korea: Industrial production wobbles again in March

April 30, 2019

Industrial production in the mining, manufacturing, and gas and electricity sectors dipped 2.8% over the same month a year prior in March, following the revised 3.4% decline registered in February (previously reported: -2.7% year-on-year). Meanwhile, the less-volatile average annual growth in industrial production inched down to 1.1% in March from 1.2% in February.

Output in the manufacturing sector—which accounts for the majority of industrial production—continued to fall in March, albeit at a softer pace than in February (March: -2.9% yoy; February: -3.5% yoy). The decline in manufacturing came on the back of a second consecutive drop in both production and shipments, while inventory levels decreased in the month. Meanwhile, the average factory capacity utilization rate increased to 71.5% in March from 70.5% in February.

A month-on-month comparison adjusted for seasonality paints a slightly rosier picture, with industrial production increasing 1.4% in March, contrasting the 2.6% drop recorded in February.

FocusEconomics Consensus Forecast panelists expect industrial production to expand 1.3% in 2019, which is down 0.1 percentage points from last month’s forecast. For 2020, our panelists project industrial output to expand 2.1%.

Author:, Economist

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Korea Industry Chart

Korea Industry March 2019

Note: Year-on-year and annual average var. of industrial production index in %.
Source: Korea National Statistics Office (KOSTAT).

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