Tue, Nov 14, 2017 - Page 12 News List

Cautious spending to slow Taiwan’s economic growth

By Crystal Hsu  /  Staff reporter

Taiwan’s economy would likely continue to expand this quarter but at a slower pace than last quarter, as companies and consumers become cautious about spending, the Germany-based Ifo Institute said yesterday.

The score for the nation’s economic landscape stands at 6.7, from 10.5 three months earlier, the institute’s poll of 1,119 experts from 120 nations showed.

The findings suggest that experts are turning conservative, although they remain positive about growth on the grounds of how a tapering of low-base benefits might weigh on the economy, said the Council for National Development, which helped to gather information for the Ifo survey.

The softening sentiment came even though the global economic outlook achieved a score of 17.1 this quarter, the highest in six years and in the expansion territory for four consecutive quarters, the survey showed.

Values above zero indicate positive sentiment, while values below the neutral mark suggest a pessimistic outlook.

The global economy would continue to receive support from a pickup in exports and raw material prices, it said.

However, experts voiced negative views about Taiwan’s economic condition, capital expenditure and private consumption for the current quarter, causing all three gauges to drop below the zero mark, the Ifo report said.

Local technology firms have refrained from acquiring capital equipment for the past six months, but this is expected to gain traction in the coming six months, the survey showed.

Experts also expect the US dollar to gain value against the New Taiwan dollar, although their predicted trend is declining, it said.

Experts were negative about a climbing TAIEX, which shed 0.45 percent to close at 10683.92 yesterday on volume of NT$121.927 billion (US$4.04 billion).

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