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Consumer sentiment up in January amid toughened virus curbs

(Yonhap)
(Yonhap)
South Korea's consumer sentiment improved in January as health authorities' tough antivirus rules mitigated worries over the spread of the coronavirus, the central bank said Wednesday.

The composite consumer sentiment index (CCSI) came to 104.4 in January, up 0.6 point from the previous month, according to data from the Bank of Korea. The rise followed a 3.8 point on-month decline tallied in December.

A reading above 100 means optimists outnumber pessimists.

The rise is ascribed to health authorities' toughened virus curbs that the central bank said helped ease concerns over the further spread of the coronavirus.

Since mid-January, the government has maintained a 9 p.m. curfew on the operation of cafes and restaurants, though it raised the ceiling on private gatherings from four people to six.

On Tuesday, the country reported a record high of 8,571 daily coronavirus infections.

Meanwhile, the subindex for people's assessment of current economic conditions came in at 76 in January, down from 79 in December, while the index gauging people's outlook for future economic conditions rose from 88 to 93 over the same period, the data showed. (Yonhap)

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