World Economy

S. Korea Growth Slows

S. Korea Growth SlowsS. Korea Growth Slows

South Korea’s economy expanded at its slowest pace in three quarters during the first three months of this year, as exports and domestic demand sagged due to subdued global demand and heavy household debts, Reuters reported. The Bank of Korea said Tuesday that Asia’s fourth-largest economy grew 2.7% during the first quarter over a year earlier and just 0.4% from the previous quarter. The results were the worst since the third quarter of 2015, when private consumption and tourism took a big hit from the spread of the deadly Middle East respiratory syndrome. Growth in July-September was 2.8% year-on-year. Government efforts helped boost private consumption late last year and early this year the authorities tried to aid recovery by cutting consumption tax cuts and by frontloading the budget. But the latest results showed that those measures fell short of reviving domestic demand as high youth unemployment rates and hefty household debts pressured consumer spending. Weaker exports and capital spending also weighed on growth.