October 25, 2019 / 5:03 AM / 25 days ago

Singapore September industrial output rises, beats expectations

Employees are seen by their workstations at a printed circuit board assembly factory in Singapore June 28, 2016. REUTERS/Edgar Su/Files

SINGAPORE (Reuters) - Singapore’s September industrial production rose for the first time in five months, beating expectations, boosted by a surge in pharmaceutical output, data showed on Friday.

Manufacturing output rose 0.1% in September from a year earlier, data from the Singapore Economic Development Board showed, compared with a revised 6.4% contraction in August. The median forecast in a Reuters poll predicted a 4.1% fall.

This was the first time manufacturing output rose since April this year, when it also grew 0.1%, Refinitiv data showed.

The surprise rise was attributed to a rise in pharmaceutical production, which rose 26.2% in September from the year ago. In August, it rose 13.3% year-on-year.

Electronics output, on the other hand, continued to see a contraction in September, slipping at 9.6% from the year-ago period, after reporting a 25% fall the month earlier.

On a month-on-month and seasonally adjusted basis, industrial production also rose above expectations at 3.7% in September, after a revised 7.3% fall in August. The median forecast was for a rise of 0.9%.

Reporting by Fathin Ungku; Editing by Rashmi Aich

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