Economists cut Singapore 2023 growth and inflation forecasts


© Reuters. FILE PHOTO: A view of the city skyline in Singapore December 31, 2020. REUTERS/Edgar Su/File Photo

SINGAPORE (Reuters) – Economists have downgraded Singapore’s 2023 growth forecasts and inflation expectations, according to a survey by the country’s central bank published on Wednesday, with spillovers from an external growth slowdown cited as the top risk.

The median forecast of 22 economists surveyed by the Monetary Authority of Singapore (MAS) is for Singapore’s economy to grow 1.0% this year, down from a forecast of 1.4% in June’s survey.

Gross domestic product is projected to expand by 2.5% in 2024.

The median inflation forecast is for headline consumer prices to rise 4.7% this year, down from 5.0% predicted in June. The median forecast for MAS core inflation, which excludes private road transport and accommodation costs, is 4.1%, unchanged from the previous survey.

Both headline inflation and MAS core inflation are expected to ease in 2024, to 3.1% and 2.8% respectively.

The survey was conducted in mid-August, just days after the government slightly cut its economic outlook for 2023 after the country narrowly averted a recession in the second quarter, with weak global demand a key drag on its economy.

About 69% of survey respondents cited the impact of a slowdown in external growth as the downside risk to the domestic outlook.

Tighter global financial conditions and rising geopolitical tensions were cited by survey respondents as the main factors that could potentially weigh on financial market and lending conditions in Singapore.

None of the economists is expecting MAS to make any changes to monetary policy in its review next month.

Majority of the respondents expect corporate profitability to decline this year, while more than half see private residential property prices rising.

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