Singapore economy watchers see stronger growth and fewer exports amid rising trade protectionism worries, compared with their views in December, according to a Monetary Authority of Singapore survey.
Growth will stay solid at 3.2 percent in 2018 after 3.6 percent last year, according to the poll’s median. That’s higher than the 3 percent median forecast in the December survey. At the same time, the share of respondents who cited trade protectionism as a downside risk more than doubled to 88 percent from 40 percent.
The growth upgrade is mainly attributable to brighter projections for wholesale and retail trade and accommodation and food services. Private consumption also was revised upward, while manufacturing’s gain was trimmed.
The forecast for the unemployment rate this year was unchanged at 2.1 percent. Inflation projections, too, held at their previous rates 1 percent for the all-items consumer price index and 1.6 percent for the MAS core inflation gauge.