Singapore likely joined Japan in recession in the fourth quarter of 2012, dragged down by weakness in its top exports of electronics, according to a Reuters poll of economists.
Gross domestic product (GDP) probably shrank by an annualized and seasonally adjusted 1.4 percent in October-December from the preceding three months, the median estimate of six economists showed.
The economy contracted 5.9 percent in the third quarter from April-June at a seasonally adjusted and annualized rate and so another quarter-on-quarter decline would meet the definition of a recession.
Singapore, whose trade is around three times GDP, has been badly hit by the weakness in Western economies that has crimped demand for many of its exports. The city-state’s electronic manufacturers have also failed to tap surging demand for smart phones, unlike rivals such as South Korea and Taiwan.
For the first 11 months of 2012, electronics production fell 11.1 percent compared with the same period last year, underscoring the weakness in the export markets.
From a year ago, Singapore’s economy probably expanded by 0.8 percent in the October-December period, bringing growth for the full year to around 1.1 percent, the poll showed.
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