Economy Grows 4.7% In Q1

Hong Kong's economy grew 4.7% in the first quarter of 2018 over a year earlier due to the strong rise in external and domestic demand.


It sustained the full-fledged upturn seen in 2017 and beat the 3.4% growth of the preceding quarter.


Delivering the First Quarter Economic Report today, Government Economist Andrew Au said external demand picked up as the global economy maintained momentum, while domestic demand also strengthened, boosted by favourable labour market conditions and positive business sentiment.


Hong Kong's total goods exports in the first quarter increased 5.2% year-on-year.


Private consumption expenditure grew by 8.6%, while overall investment expenditure rose 3.8% for the period.


The residential property market remained active in the first quarter. Though trading volume was down 8% compared with the preceding quarter, it was 14% higher than a year ago.


Residential property prices rose by 4% between December and March and overall flat prices in March exceeded the 1997 peak by 113%.


Underlying consumer price inflation rose to 2.4% for the period, due to favourable global and local economic situations as well as some temporary factors.


Mr Au said if robust economic conditions continue, upward pressure will likely be exerted on inflation over the year, though the inflation rate for 2018 should remain moderate.


The forecast rates of underlying and headline consumer price inflation for 2018 as a whole, at 2.5% and 2.2% as announced in the Budget, remain unchanged.


Mr Au added the global economy is likely to continue expanding for the rest of the year.


"However, we also look that, external uncertainties have increased compared with three months ago. The trade tensions between the US and its major trading partners, notably the Mainland, have become the key source of uncertainty.


"Another key source of uncertainty, is the possibility of a faster pace of US interest rate normalisation, which will have repercussions on the stability of the global financial conditions."


The 3% to 4% forecast of real GDP growth for 2018 remains unchanged.


US Stocks Rise On Hopes Of Pause In Rate Increases

Wall Street stocks finished solidly higher on Thursday, reflecting better sentiment on the US economy and a consensus vi... Read more

China's Financial Risks 'controllable': Regulators

The head of the National Financial Regulatory Administration on Thursday told a high-profile forum in Shanghai that the ... Read more

Banks Cut Yuan Deposit Rates, Could Boost Consumption

China's biggest banks on Thursday said they have lowered interest rates on yuan deposits, in actions that could ease pre... Read more

Cheese And Wine Put EU, Australia Deal In Peril

Australia on Thursday threatened to walk away from a blockbuster free trade deal with the European Union unless its prod... Read more

US Stocks End Mixed As Tech Shares Are Sold Off

Gains by industrial companies lifted the Dow on Wednesday, while weakness among technology shares pushed the Nasdaq deci... Read more

Amazon 'plans Prime Video Streaming Service With Ads' is planning to launch an advertising-supported tier of its Prime Video streaming service, the Wall Street Jou... Read more