Manufacturing bosses more upbeat about business conditions, services firms less cheery

Bosses of manufacturing firms in Singapore have become generally more optimistic about business conditions, on the back of an improving global economy. -- ST FILE PHOTO: DESMOND FOO
Bosses of manufacturing firms in Singapore have become generally more optimistic about business conditions, on the back of an improving global economy. -- ST FILE PHOTO: DESMOND FOO

Bosses of manufacturing firms in Singapore have become generally more optimistic about business conditions, on the back of an improving global economy.

Just over a tenth of them expect the outlook to brighten in January to June period this year compared with the October to December period last year, according to the Economic Development Board's (EDB) latest survey of business expectations in the manufacturing sector.

More than eight in 10 manufacturing bosses think business prospects will stay the same, while just 7 per cent are tipping a decline in the outlook.

Within the sector, all clusters except electronics are projecting better business conditions for the first half of this year, the EDB said.

Companies in the services sector are less upbeat, according to data compiled by the Singapore Department of Statistics.

Although 15 per cent are anticipating an improved outlook for the first half of this year compared with the second half of last year, an almost equal proportion - 14 per cent - are expecting business conditions to worsen.

Firms operating in the information and communications, recreation, community and personal services and financial and insurance industries are the most optimistic, while food and beverage services and real estate services businesses are the least cheery.