Economists raise Singapore's growth forecast to 3.8 pct for 2013

Economists raise Singapore's growth forecast to 3.8 pct for 2013

SINGAPORE, Dec. 11 (Xinhua) -- Economists and analysts who closely monitor the Singapore economy raised their forecast for the whole year growth rate from 2.9 percent in September to 3.8 percent, a survey conducted by Monetary Authority of Singapore ( MAS), the city-state's central bank, said on Wednesday.

For the fourth quarter of this year, the respondents expect gross domestic product (GDP) to expand by 4.7 percent, which is higher than the 3.4 percent forecast in the previous survey.

According to official data, the GDP growth in Singapore expanded by 5.8 percent in Q3 compared with the same period last year. This real growth rate was higher than the 4 percent growth that was reported in the survey in September.

Economists' growth expectations are also in line with the MAS' full year growth forecast. The authorities had raised their forecast for the economic growth from 2.5 to 3.5 percent to 3.5 to 4.0 percent in November.

The economists slightly downgraded their forecast for the CPI inflation from 2.5 percent in the September survey to 2.4 percent, which was below the official forecast range of 2.5 to 3 percent headline inflation. For the fourth quarter, the headline inflation is projected at 2.1 percent.

The MAS core inflation, which excludes the costs of accommodation and private road transport, is expected to be 1.7 percent for this year, lower than the 1.9 percent in the previous survey.

For 2014, the respondents expect GDP growth at 3.9 percent, while headline CPI inflation and MAS core inflation is forecast to be 2.8 percent and 2.3 percent, respectively, the survey added.