April 24, 2018 / 8:20 AM / a year ago

Singapore March industrial output seen up 5.4 percent: Reuters poll

Construction workers are suspended on a steel beam at a work site in Singapore August 14, 2017. REUTERS/Edgar Su/Files

SINGAPORE (Reuters) - Singapore’s industrial production is expected to have risen at a slightly slower annual pace in March than the previous month, a Reuters poll showed on Tuesday.

Manufacturing output in March is likely to be up 5.4 percent from a year earlier, according to a Reuters poll of 10 analysts.

The manufacturing output data is expected to grow despite a surprise fall in exports in March as electronics exports fell for the fourth consecutive month.

There has been a “divergence” in manufacturing output and exports in the past year, said Brian Tan, an economist with Nomura.

“If you look at the last diverged, exports have been persistently weak, while manufacturing has been persistently fantastic,” Tan added.

Singapore’s industrial production in February topped forecast, rising more than expected from a year ago at 8.9 percent due to a surge in electronics output.

Industrial production is seen to grow at 0.5 percent from the previous month on a seasonally adjusted basis in March. It declined 0.5 percent in February.

Tan expects production of electronics, especially semiconductors, to continue being the star of the show for Singapore factories.

Reporting by Fathin Ungku, Editing by Sherry Jacob-Phillips

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