Channel NewsAsia

S’pore likely to post Q4 GDP growth of more than 5%

For the fourth quarter of 2013, Singapore is likely to post GDP growth of more than 5 per cent compared to a year ago, faster than the advance estimate of 4.4 per cent announced last month.

SINGAPORE: Singapore is likely to report that economic growth in the fourth quarter as well as for the whole of 2013 was faster than earlier estimated.

The Ministry of Trade and Industry is due to announce final numbers at 8am on Thursday.

Most analysts said they forecast that Singapore's economy will grow faster this year compared to 2013.

For the fourth quarter of last year, Singapore is expected to post GDP growth of more than 5 per cent compared to a year ago, faster than the advance estimate of 4.4 per cent announced last month.

Economists said this reflects the manufacturing sector's stronger-than-expected expansion in December.

Michael Wan, economist at Credit Suisse, said: "For the fourth quarter, we expect the GDP to be revised up to 5 per cent year-on-year. The provisional estimate is 4.4 per cent but we expect some offsetting effects from the finance sectors and some weak numbers from the food and beverage sector."

For the whole of 2013, economists polled by Channel NewsAsia forecast the economy to have grown by about 4 per cent.

That is higher than the government's advance estimate of 3.7 per cent.

However, they warn that there are headwinds ahead, mostly from the domestic front.

Curbs on foreign labour and a slower property market could dampen growth.

Still, most economists project growth in 2014 to be near the top of the government's forecast range of 2 to 4 per cent.

Mr Wan said: "We think that 2014 could do better than in 2013 due to better numbers out of Europe and a more buoyant US."

Economic recoveries in the US and Europe are expected to boost Singapore's Industrial production numbers in 2014.

And while most expect the Monetary Authority of Singapore to maintain a gradual appreciation of the Sing dollar due to rising inflation caused by wage cost pressure, economists said exports should also continue to grow this year after shrinking by 6 per cent last year. 

Tweet Photos, Videos and Update on this Story to  #cna