Consumer confidence continues its 4-month drop

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Consumer confidence continues its 4-month drop

Korea’s consumer confidence fell for the fourth straight month in March, due mainly to a growing trade row between Washington and Beijing and ongoing restructuring issues, a central bank poll showed Tuesday.

The composite consumer sentiment index for this month stood at 108.1, down 0.1 point from the previous month, according to a survey by the Bank of Korea (BOK).

The index has been on a steady decline since November, when it hit a seven-year high of 112.

A reading above 100 means that optimists outnumber pessimists.

The central bank said Koreans are worried that the intensifying U.S.-China clash on trade issues may drag down the country’s exports to the world’s first- and second-largest economies.

The latest news on the restructuring of GM Korea and Kumho Tire, a leading tire maker, also dampened consumer confidence, the BOK added.

The BOK said its index that measures people’s sentiments regarding current economic conditions fell two points to a six-month low of 87 in March.

In addition, an index measuring the public’s feelings toward economic conditions over the next six months slid to 97 from 98 over the cited period.

The latest monthly index is based on a survey of 2,012 households throughout the country conducted from March 12 to 19.

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