South Korea’s major companies are bracing for challenging times in July, as unfavorable exchange rates hurt exporters and consumer demand hit by the ferry disaster has not recovered, a poll showed Sunday.
The Business Survey Index came to a five-month low of 94 for July, a dip from 94.5 forecast for June, according to the poll of the 600 largest companies by sales conducted by the Federation of Korean Industries. A BSI reading below the benchmark 100 means pessimists outnumber optimists.
“Consumer spending has not fully recovered from the sinking of the ferry, while the strong won is adversely affecting profitability of exporters,” the lobbying group for big businesses said in a press release.
Government data showed retail sales grew a meager 1.4 percent in May from the month before, with industrial output across all sectors contracting 1 percent in the same month vis-a-vis April. (Yonhap)