Semiconductors and automobiles that have led rebound in export in external-reliant South Korean economy face headwind ahead amid global disruption in the supply chain due to chip shortage, survey found.
The business survey index (BSI) of the country’s top 600 companies by sales measuring their business sentiment for April came to 106.0, falling from 112.9 in March, according to monthly release from the Korea Economic Research Institute (KERI).
A reading above 100 means optimists greater than pessimists. KERI BSI has managed to stay over the 100 threshold for two months,
But the outlook from electronics and telecom equipment deteriorated to 90.0, off 20.5 points. The sentiment for automobiles also fell 11.4 points to 97.4.
Prices of memory chips are rising worldwide and shortage of auto chips has been disrupting automobile productions worldwide. Korean electronics and automobile companies also are beginning to fret about difficulty in securing key parts, said a KERI official.
According to DRAMeXchange, the PC DRAM (DDR4 8Gb) spot price surged by 53.6 percent from $2.8 at the end of last year to $4.3 in March.
Spike in commodity prices may also lead to scale-back or stall in investment with the subindex corporate investment outlook falling to 99.4.
KERI said 418 out of the 600 companies except for financial companies responded to the survey, which was conducted from Mar. 18-25.
By Kim Jung-hwan and Minu Kim
[ⓒ Pulse by Maeil Business Newspaper & mk.co.kr, All rights reserved]