South Korea's industrial output rebounded in September compared with a month earlier despite lingering external uncertainties such as Europe's debt crisis, a government report showed Monday.
Output in mining, manufacturing and electricity & gas sectors grew 1.1 percent in September from the previous month, marking a rebound in three months after contracting in July and August, according to the report by Statistics Korea. From a year before, the output expanded 6.8 percent last month, keeping its on-year expansion for the 27th consecutive month.
The September figure came as strong demand for chips and non- metallic minerals outweighed underperformance in machinery and autos, according to the report. Production in chips and components jumped by 7.3 percent on-month in September, with output in non- metallic minerals advancing by 7.2 percent over the same period.
Shipment in the mining firms and manufacturers rose 1.8 percent on-month in September, while inventory in the sector edged up 0.2 percent over the cited period.
Local manufacturers operated at an average capacity of 81.3 percent last month, up 0.9 percentage point from a month earlier. The factory utilization rate stood at 81.2 percent a year before.
Meanwhile, production in the service industry shrank 1.6 percent on-month in September due to downswings in wholesale & retail, finance & insurance and publication & broadcasting sectors, according to the report.
Retail sales posted a 3.2 percent on-month contraction last month as underperformance in durable goods, including computers, mobile devices and consumer electronics, as well as non-durables such as food and beverages outweighed strong sales of semi- durables.
Facility investment decreased 2.0 percent on-month in September as capital spending decreases in general and precision machinery outpaced increases in electric & electronic devices and automobiles.
The value of construction completed at constant price gained 3. 8 percent in September from a month before, but the value of construction orders received at current price contracted 5 percent last month from a year earlier, according to the report.
The leading index of economic indicators, which gauges business activities eight to 15 months ahead, rose 1.5 percent on-year in September, down 0.4 percentage point from the previous month. The coincident index, measuring current economic conditions, went down 0.8 point last month from a month earlier.