April 13, 2018 / 8:19 AM / 3 months ago

Singapore March exports likely climbed marginally from last year: Reuters poll

SINGAPORE (Reuters) - Singapore’s non-oil domestic exports likely rose marginally in March from a year earlier, a Reuters poll showed on Friday, indicating that a strong growth in electronics shipments offset a high-base effect from last year.

An aerial view of shipping containers stacked at the port of Singapore February 14, 2012. REUTERS/Edgar Su/Files

Non-oil domestic exports are expected to have risen 0.2 percent last month from a year earlier, according to the median forecast in a survey of 10 economists.

“Electronics exports will likely return to positive growth after three consecutive months of decline, given the continued strength in manufacturing output numbers in the first two months of the year,” said Maybank Kin Eng Securities economist, Lee Ju Ye.

Activity in Singapore factories expanded at a faster pace in March as the electronics sector rebounded, a Singapore Institute of Purchasing & Materials Management’s Purchasing Managers’ Index (PMI) survey showed earlier this month.

The marginal rise in monthly shipments is seen after the city-state’s year-on-year exports fell 5.9 percent in February, compared with a 12.9 percent surge in January.

Exports came under pressure as February had fewer business days with the Lunar New Year holidays in the middle of the month. Last year, the holidays were in January.

“March data will be closely watched since it is the first clean reading after Lunar New Year festivities affected January and February data,” Moody’s said in a research note.

On a month-on-month and seasonally adjusted basis, non-oil domestic exports were seen climbing 4.7 percent, the poll showed, after contracting 2.6 percent in February.

Workers look as a container ship is unloaded at a berth in a PSA International port terminal in Singapore September 25, 2013. REUTERS/Edgar Su/Files

Reporting by Fathin Ungku; Editing by Amrutha Gayathri

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