Hong Kong Economic Forecast

Hong Kong Economic Outlook

April 16, 2019

Economic momentum likely ticked up in Q1 2019 but remained feeble, after growth fell to a nearly three-year low in the previous quarter. The main positive development came from a rebound in the stock and property markets, which should support private spending. Nonetheless, the private-sector PMI remained mired in contractionary territory throughout the quarter, though its average reading slightly improved compared to Q4. Meanwhile, retail sales contracted over January-February, due largely to a slowdown in mainland tourist arrivals combined with lower spending per visitor. Finally, the labor market in February shed jobs for the first time since 2011, in a sign that private consumption could face pressures going forward. Looking at Q2, external factors should still drag on growth, but the picture is set to improve thanks to Chinese fiscal stimulus, a likely growth rebound in other advanced economies and a more dovish Fed.

Hong Kong Economic Growth

The economy is expected to slow this year, largely due to regional headwinds stemming from a Chinese slowdown. Moreover, the property market remains at risk of a further correction, although the Fed’s recent dovish policy shift could support prices. Swift progress on defusing the U.S.-China trade dispute is a possible upside risk to the outlook. Our panel expects growth of 2.2% in 2019, which is down 0.1 percentage points from last month’s forecast, and 2.3% in 2020.

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Hong Kong Facts

Bond Yield1.633.38 %Apr 12
Exchange Rate7.84-0.11 %Apr 12
Stock Market29,911-1.92 %Apr 12

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