The Korea Herald


S. Korea to post negative GDP growth due to coronavirus: reports

By Kim Young-won

Published : April 5, 2020 - 17:34

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(Yonhap) (Yonhap)

South Korea is likely to post negative economic growth this year due to the novel coronavirus pandemic, data showed Sunday.

The average estimate of the nation’s gross domestic product growth for this year recently came to negative 0.9 percent, drastically down from the previous suggestion of around 2 percent.

The forecasts were tallied from 11 global financial services firms, including Standard Chartered, UBS, Morgan Stanley, Nomura Holdings and Credit Suisse.

The plunge is attributed COVID-19, which has already claimed more than 63,000 lives around the world, the research firms said.

Even when excluding Nomura’s remarkable contraction of 6.7 percent -- the most severe forecast of all -- the average still stands at a negative 0.3 percent, indicating a pessimistic consensus among market observers.

In a recent report released on April 3, Capital Economics slashed the nation’s annual growth rate to negative 3 percent, from the negative 1 percent it predicted late last month.

“The global economy is expected to contract more than it did in the last financial crisis, dampening domestic demand,” the London-based economic research firm said.

Morgan Stanley, UBS and Standard Chartered projected that the nation would record negative 1 percent, negative 0.9 percent and negative 0.6 percent, respectively.

While the Korean government is expected to announce the nation’s growth estimate for the first three months this year on April 23, market watchers here suggest that the quarterly growth rate will drop nearly to zero percent.

By Kim Young-won (