Taiwan's 3Q Output Accelerates as Asian Exports Boom Endures

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Taiwan’s export-oriented economy surged in the third quarter, fed by the smartphone cycle and Asia’s trade boom.

Key Points

  • Gross domestic product expanded 3.11 percent from a year earlier
  • That beat the median estimate of 2.2 percent in a Bloomberg survey of economists, and the previously-reported expansion of 2.13 percent in the second quarter.

Big Picture

Buoyant trade has helped keep Taiwan’s economy expanding above 2 percent for five straight quarters as demand for its electronics-manufacturing output from mainland China and elsewhere offset the sluggish performance in the consumer sector. Economists anticipate the central bank in Taiwan will be among those in Asia that tighten policy next year as an export recovery fuels capital investment and stokes prices.

Economist Takeaways

"Exports did better than most think in 3Q, but it’s not certain going forward given the fading boost from Apple orders," said Claire Huang, an economist at Societe Generale SA in Hong Kong.

"The better-than-expected figure comes mostly from exports," said Woods Chen, chief economist at Yuanta Securities Investment Consulting Co. "Domestic consumption is however relatively weak, which also results in low inflation."

Details

  • The official forecast for 2017 GDP growth may be revised upwards to 2.42 percent from 2.11 percent in August, according an official at the Directorate-General of Budget, Accounting and Statistics

— With assistance by Chinmei Sung, Miaojung Lin, Xiaoqing Pi, and Yinan Zhao

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