The Straits Times
Published on Nov 08, 2012

Malaysia September factory output up 4.9% year-on-year, beats forecast


KUALA LUMPUR (REUTERS) - Malaysia's industrial production rose 4.9 per cent in September from a year earlier, beating market expectations, official data showed on Thursday, in line with data from elsewhere in the region suggesting that an economic downturn is easing.

A Reuters poll had forecast output to rise 0.6 per cent year-on-year led by higher production of passenger and commercial vehicles. The index for August 2012 was revised up to show a 0.2 per cent fall compared with a steeper 0.7 per cent drop previously.

Malaysia's manufacturing and mining together account for 35 per cent of its gross domestic product, which grew a surprisingly strong 5.4 per cent in the second quarter, helped by domestic demand and increased government spending.

Later on Thursday, Malaysia's central bank holds a policy meeting where it is expected to keep interest rates unchanged for a ninth consecutive time, according to the Reuters poll.