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Biz sentiment remains weak on virus impact: survey

All News 11:00 May 26, 2020

SEOUL, May 26 (Yonhap) -- Business sentiment in South Korea remains weak for June due mainly to the new coronavirus impact on major industries, a local think tank said Tuesday.

The business survey index (BSI) of the country's top 600 companies by sales came to 68.9 for May, slightly up from the 61.8 given for May, the Korea Economic Research Institute (KERI) said in a statement.

A reading below 100 means pessimists outnumber optimists, while a figure above the benchmark means the opposite.

The BSI has stayed below 100 for 25 consecutive months after reaching 100.3 in May 2018, said KERI, a research institute under the Federation of Korean Industries (FKI).

KERI's analysis for this month gave an index of 70.6, which improved from a month earlier as the COVID-19 outbreak seems to have passed its peak, it said.

"Key manufacturing industries such as airline, tourism, and petrochemicals, are deeply concerned about their business results for the year if the virus prolongs," a KERI official said.

As of Monday, South Korea reported 11,206 confirmed coronavirus cases and 267 deaths.

KERI said 360 out of the 600 companies responded to the survey, which was conducted from May 13-20.

This image captured from Facebook shows the Korea Economic Research Institute's logo. (Yonhap)


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