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S. Korea's macroeconomic uncertainty hits 3-year high: BOK

All News 09:46 January 17, 2016

SEOUL, Jan. 17 (Yonhap) -- South Korea's macroeconomic uncertainty touched a three-year high in late 2015 as the U.S. interest rate hike and China's economic slowdown have shaken financial markets across the world, the Korean central bank said Sunday.

The Bank of Korea (BOK) said the macroeconomic index based on eight indicators, including economic growth, business sentiment and stock market indices, stood at 37.5 in December 2015, the highest since January 2013.

The index bottomed out in the first half of 2007 but surged to a record high of 91.6 in 2009, in the wake of the global financial crisis.

Uncertainties in the world's two largest economies have raised concerns over the Korean economy, which is highly dependent on exports and foreign investment.

The BOK kept its key rate frozen at a record low 1.5 percent for January, citing remaining uncertainties in the global market.

The bank said the U.S. Federal Reserve's additional rate hike this year is expected to prompt an outflow of foreign capital from emerging market countries, including South Korea.

ejkim@yna.co.kr
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