Manufacturers more optimistic than services firms about next six months: Surveys

MANUFACTURERS in Singapore are more upbeat about their business prospects for the next six months than companies in the services sector, according to two surveys released on Tuesday.

Only 7 per cent of manufacturers expect the outlook for the April to September period to deteriorate, compared with 14 per cent of services firms, the surveys showed.

In both sectors, one in five companies polled foresees better days ahead.

But within manufacturing, 74 per cent of firms believe business conditions will remain stable, while only 66 per cent of services firms has this projection.

Precision engineering firms, which have been in a recent slump, are the most optimistic of all the manufacturers, according to the manufacturing business expectations survey conducted by the Economic Development Board. Chemicals manufacturers, on the other hand, are the gloomiest.

For firms in the services industries, financial and insurance companies are the cheeriest, while retail trade companies are the least optimistic, according to the services business expectations survey from the Department of Statistics.