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Biz sentiment to worsen in Q4 amid N. Korea risks

South Korean manufacturers' business sentiments are expected to worsen in the fourth quarter due mainly to growing North Korea risks, a survey showed Thursday.

The business sentiment index, compiled by the Korea Chamber of Commerce and Industry, stood at 85 in the October-December period, down from 94 tallied in the third quarter, maintaining its bearish run for years.

The BSI has been under the benchmark 100 point for the past 13 consecutive quarters. The last time the BSI measured above 100 was in the third quarter of 2014.

The survey was conducted on some 2,200 manufacturing firms.

The KCCI said escalating tensions between North Korea and the United States following the former's sixth nuclear test early this month are sapping business sentiments here.

US President Donald Trump said Tuesday he is "totally prepared" to use military options against North Korea. His latest warning came in response to Pyongyang's threat a day earlier to shoot down approaching American bombers, even if they are in international air space.

The outlook for exports in the fourth quarter fell to 91 from 104 in the previous quarter, and the forecast for domestic demand declined to 84 from 92, the survey showed. (Yonhap)
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