South Korea’s gross domestic product climbed a seasonally adjusted 0.8 percent on quarter in the second quarter of 2021, the Bank of Korea said in Thursday’s final reading.

That was up from 0.7 percent in July’s advance estimate and it follows the 1.7 percent in the previous three months.

Real gross national income increased by 0.1 percent in the second quarter compared to the previous quarter.

On the production side, manufacturing fell by 1.3 percent, mainly in transportation equipment and fabricated metal products. Construction declined by 1.3 percent, owing to decreases in building construction and civil engineering. Services grew by 2.1 percent, with increases in transportation & storage and cultural & other services.

On the expenditure side, private consumption was up by 3.6 percent, as expenditures on semi-durable goods (clothing) and services (recreation & culture, restaurants & accommodation services) increased. Government consumption rose by 3.9 percent, mainly due to increased expenditures on health care benefits.

Construction investment contracted by 2.3 percent, as building construction and civil engineering both decreased. Facilities investment grew by 1.1 percent, driven by an increase in transportation equipment.

Exports fell by 2.0 percent, due to decreases in motor vehicles and LCDs. Imports were up by 2.8 percent, owing to increased imports of basic metals and chemical products.

On an annualized basis, GDP was up 6.0 percent – again marking a slight upward revision from 5.9 percent in the advance estimate. That’s up sharply from 1.9 percent in the first quarter.

Nominal GNI rose by 2.4 percent in the second quarter of 2021 relative to the quarter before, increasing more than nominal GDP (1.9 percent) as net factor income from the rest of the world increased.

Real GNI grew by 0.1 percent compared to the previous quarter, increasing less than real GDP (0.8 percent) as the terms of trade worsened. The GDP deflator increased by 1.6 percent year on year.

The gross saving ratio (gross saving/gross national disposable income) stood at 35.8 percent, 1.7 percentage points lower than in the previous quarter, as the final consumption expenditure (5.0 percent) increased more than the nominal gross national disposable income (2.2 percent).

The gross domestic investment ratio (gross capital formation/GNDI) was 31.7 percent, 0.7 percentage points higher than in the previous quarter, due to an increase in facilities investment.

Also on Thursday, Statistics Korea said that consumer prices in South Korea were up 2.6 percent on year in August. That was unchanged from the July reading, although it exceeded expectations for 2.3 percent.

On a monthly basis, consumer prices rose 0.6 percent – also beating forecasts for 0.3 percent and up from 0.2 percent in the previous month.

Core CPI, which excludes volatile food prices, rose 0.3 percent on month and 1.3 percent on year after gaining 0.4 percent on month and 1.2 percent on year in July.


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