Bloomberg News

South Korean Manufacturers’ Confidence Drops to 30-Month Low

December 28, 2011

Dec. 28 (Bloomberg) -- South Korean manufacturers’ confidence fell to a 30-month low as Europe’s sovereign-debt crisis and North Korean leader Kim Jong Il’s death clouded the country’s business outlook.

An index measuring expectations for January dropped to 79 from 83 for December, the Bank of Korea said in a statement in Seoul today. That’s the lowest level since July 2009. A measure of expectations at non-manufacturing companies also fell to 79 from 82.

The survey, conducted from Dec. 14 to Dec. 21, was based on responses from 1,618 manufacturers and 890 non-manufacturers. North Korea announced the death of its leader on Dec. 19, with his son Kim Jong Un, thought to be under 30, to succeed as ruler.

South Korea’s consumer confidence fell to a three-month low in December, a central bank report showed yesterday. Concern the political outlook in the North will worsen is adding to economic risks in Asia, where exports face declining demand due to Europe’s protracted crisis.

--Editors: Stephanie Phang, Ryan Woo

To contact the reporter on this story: Eunkyung Seo in Seoul at

To contact the editor responsible for this story: Paul Panckhurst at

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