South Korea’s industrial output steady in Nov. amid auto production drop


SEOUL–South Korea’s industrial output for November was unchanged from October as falling auto production offset the increase in memory chips and petrochemical products, state data showed Monday.

Production in the mining, manufacturing, gas and electricity industries remained flat, after growing at their fastest pace for 11 months in October, Statistics Korea said. Compared with a year earlier, output in November rose 1.3 percent.

October’s figure was the fastest monthly growth since November 2012. Production of memory chips and related components rose 4.4 percent on-month while petrochemical production also climbed 4.3 percent.

But production of cars — one of the country’s key export items — fell 2.7 percent, Statistics Korea said in a statement.

Asia’s fourth-largest economy expanded 1.1 percent on-month in the second and third quarters of this year — the fastest pace since the first quarter of 2011. On-year, it expanded 3.3 percent in the third quarter, accelerating a 2.3 percent gain in the April-June period.

The government has predicted that the country’s economy will grow 2.7 percent this year and 3.9 percent in 2014.