Economists Lower Singapore Growth and Inflation Projections for 2015: MAS Survey

Private-sector economists are less sanguine about the growth outlook for Singapore’s economy this year, and have moderated their expectations for several sectors, a quarterly survey released by the Monetary Authority of Singapore on Wednesday shows.

The economists polled in the survey say they expect the economy to grow 2.2% this year, down from their median forecast of 2.7% in the previous survey in June. The economy grew 1.85 in 2Q 2015.

The manufacturing sector is expected to see a contraction of 2.7% this year, down from the 0.5% forecast in the previous survey. The finance and insurance industry is expected to grow 6.6%, down from 7%, while the construction sector is expected to grow 2.3%, down from 3.3%. The accommodation and food services sector is expected to contract 0.1%, compared with a growth forecast of 1 per cent.

However, the forecast for the wholesale and retail trade sector has been revised upwards. It is expected to grow 4.8% this year, up from 3.3% in the previous survey.

For 3Q 2015, the economists say they expect GDP to expand 2.1%, compared with the 2.9% forecast in the June survey.

Inflation is expected to slow, with the economists projecting the consumer price index to dip 0.2% for the full year, down from the 0% forecast in March. Core inflation – which excludes accommodation and car prices – is expected to come in at 0.5%, below the 1% in the previous survey.

The economists say they expect GDP to expand 2.8% next year. Headline inflation and MAS core inflation are forecast to be 1.1% and 1.3%, respectively.

The MAS Survey of Professional Forecasters is conducted every quarter after the release of detailed economic data for the previous three months. The median forecasts in the latest report were based on the estimates of 23 economists.

This article first appeared in The Edge Singapore Market Report.

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