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9 June 2010

Singapore: 9% growth expected, says survey

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SINGAPORE : Private sector economists are even more bullish about Singapore's economic outlook, raising their full year 2010 growth forecasts for Singapore.

Those polled by the Monetary Authority of Singapore for its latest Survey of Professional Forecasters now expect the Singapore economy to grow by nine per cent this year.

This is an upgrade from their previous expectations for a 6.5 per cent growth made just three months ago in March.

The nine per cent forecast is at the upper end of the government's official forecast for seven-to-nine per cent growth.

And for next year, economists expect growth to average 5.5 per cent.

Looking at the various sectors, economists also upgraded the likely growth of four of the five industries.

Double-digit expansion is expected for the manufacturing, construction and wholesale and retail trade sectors, though financial services is expected to grow as well.

The private economists say the manufacturing sector is now expected to expand by close to 17 per cent.

Construction will grow by 10 per cent and the financial services sector is expected to grow by nine per cent.

Singapore's non-oil domestic exports are expected to grow almost 18 per cent.

As for 2011, the private economists expect the economy to grow 5.5 per cent.

Manufacturing is predicted to drive growth, as economists forecast a 16.7 per cent on-year increase, up from the previous forecast of 9.7 per cent.

The only exception is the hotels and restaurants sector, where respondents cut their forecast from 8.5 per cent to 8.2 per cent.

For the second quarter this year, economists say growth may probably come in at 9.4 per cent on-year, higher than 6.3 per cent in the previous survey.

With higher growth, analysts also expect consumer prices to creep up.

Their median inflation forecast for the full year climbed marginally from 2.7 per cent to 2.8 per cent, with second quarter inflation expected at 3.2 per cent.

As for the labour market, the respondents expect the unemployment rate to be at 2 percent by the end of the year, unchanged from the previous survey.

19 respondents took part in the survey.


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