Singapore's economy grows at slower pace of 2.1% in Q2

The CBD skyline on June 05 2014. Lacklustre activity at Singapore's factories dragged the economy's growth down to 2.1 per cent in the second quarter over a year ago, the Ministry of Trade and Industry said on Monday. -- PHOTO: ST FILE
The CBD skyline on June 05 2014. Lacklustre activity at Singapore's factories dragged the economy's growth down to 2.1 per cent in the second quarter over a year ago, the Ministry of Trade and Industry said on Monday. -- PHOTO: ST FILE

SINGAPORE - Lacklustre activity at Singapore's factories dragged the economy's growth down to 2.1 per cent in the second quarter over a year ago, the Ministry of Trade and Industry said on Monday.

This was lower than the 4.7 per cent expansion in the first quarter over last year, which was itself revised down from an earlier estimate of 4.9 per cent.

The manufacturing sector, which accounts for a fifth of the economy, grew just 0.2 per cent in the April to June period over last year, down from the 9.9 per cent growth in the first quarter over last year.

This translated into a hefty contraction of 19.4 per cent in the second quarter from the first quarter.

The ministry said this was "largely due to a contraction in electronics output and slower growth in transport engineering output".

The other two key sectors of Singapore's economy - services and construction - also logged smaller expansions in the second quarter.

Services, which makes up two-thirds of the economy, grew 2.8 per cent in the second quarter over a year ago, after expanding 3.9 per cent in the first three months.

The slowdown was attributed mainly to poorer showings in the wholesale and retail trade as well as the transportation and storage sectors, the ministry said.

Construction activity rose 5 per cent in the April to June period from last year, down from 6.4 per cent in the first quarter, as private-sector building slowed.

Compared with the first quarter, the economy shrank 0.8 per cent in the second quarter. It had grown 1.6 per cent in the first quarter over the fourth quarter last year.