Leading Index Down 1.2% Y-o-Y In March 2023: Stat’s Dept

Malaysia’s leading index (LI) decreased by 1.2% to 110.1 points in March 2023, from 111.4 points in March 2022, according to the Department of Statistics Malaysia (DOSM).

In a statement on Thursday (May 25), the department said that based on the LI, which shows where the economy is heading in the near term, Malaysia’s economy may grow at a slower pace in the third quarter of 2023.

“The LI performance was weighed down by significant decreases in real imports of semiconductors and the Bursa Malaysia Industrial Index.

“The monthly LI also weakened by 1.1% in March 2023, compared to 2.9% in the previous month,
attributed by expected sales value, manufacturing (-0.6%) and real imports of other basic precious & other non-ferrous metals (-0.5%),” it said.

Looking at the smoothed long-term trend in March 2023, DOSM said the LI recorded 99.3 points from 99.2 points in February 2023.

“Although it remained below the trend of 100.0 points, the economy is anticipated to grow modestly in the near term.

“The expectation is in view of global headwinds and domestic uncertainties,” it said.

Meanwhile, the coincident index (CI), which reflects the current economic condition, rose 3.4% to 121.9 points in March 2023 (March 2022: 117.9 points).

“The increase was contributed by all components except capacity utilisation and manufacturing.

“Concomitantly, the monthly CI also recorded an increase of 0.2%, supported mainly by volume index of retail trade (0.3%),” it added.

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