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South Korea's consumer confidence rebounds on stimulus measures

Posted on Aug 27 2014 | IANS

Seoul, Aug 27 : Confidence among South Korean consumers rebounded on expectations that fiscal and monetary stimulus would boost recovery of the economy, which was hit hard by the April ferry disaster, central bank data showed Wednesday.

Composite consumer sentiment index (CCSI) increased to 107 in August from 105 a month earlier, according to the Bank of Korea (BOK).

The index slid to 105 in May after staying at 108 during the prior three-month period as consumers refrained from travel and entertainment after the maritime tragedy, which left more than 300 people, mostly high school students, dead or missing, reported Xinhua.

The August rebound came after the finance ministry announced a 41 trillion won (USD 40 billion) stimulus package and the central bank cut rates by a quarter percentage point to boost the faltering private consumption and bolster "'economic agents' sentiment".

Sub-indices showed optimistic performance. Sentiment on current economic conditions advanced 6 points from a month earlier to 81 for August, with the reading for prospective economic situations rising 8 points to 100.

Consumer sentiment on current living standards increased from 91 to 92, and the figure for prospective living standards was unchanged at 100.

Inflation expectations among consumers over the next 12 months stood at an annual rate of 2.8 percent in August, staying at the level for four straight months.

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