S.Korea’s Q1 economic growth faster than expected at 1.7%


Seoul, June 9 | South Korea’s economy grew slightly faster than expected in the first quarter, thanks to a robust recovery of exports and facility investment, inching the nation’s economic growth closer to the pre-pandemic level, central bank data showed on Wednesday.

Asia’s fourth-largest economy grew 1.7 per cent in the first quarter from three months earlier, 0.1 percentage point higher than earlier expected, according to preliminary data from the Bank of Korea (BOK).

The country’s annualized growth in the January-March period was also revised up to 1.9 per cent, up 0.1 percentage point, Yonhap reported.

“Facilities investment grew by 6.1 per cent, led by the growth of investment in machinery and transportation equipment,” the BOK said in a statement.

“Exports increased by 2 percent, as exports of goods, such as motor vehicles and mobile phones, expanded,” it said.

Last month, the BOK sharply raised its 2021 growth outlook to 4 per cent from 3 per cent, while holding its benchmark policy rate unchanged at a record low of 0.5 per cent, amid a strong rebound in exports.

BOK Gov Lee Ju-yeol has said the pace of the economic recovery was faster than expected but more patience is necessary for the monetary policy.

However, Lee sounded a slightly hawkish tone when asked about the possibility of a rate hike this year, saying that such a hike “depends on the pace of recovery.”

Park Yang-su, head of the BOK’s economic statistics bureau, told reporters that if the economy grows 0.7 per cent or 0.8 per cent on a quarterly basis by the fourth quarter of this year, the annual GDP would grow 4.1 per cent or 4.2 per cent this year.

In the first quarter, private consumption grew 1.2 per cent on-quarter and construction investment rose 1.3 percent from the previous quarter, the BOK said.

South Korea’s economy shrank 0.9 per cent in 2020, 0.1 percentage point higher than earlier estimated.

However, it marked the first annual contraction since 1998, when the economy shrank 5.1 percent due to the Asian financial crisis.

In 2019, the economy expanded 2.2 per cent, accelerating from its earlier estimate of 2 per cent.

Meanwhile, the BOK said the country’s gross national income (GNI) increased 2.4 per cent in the first quarter from three months earlier.

“Real GNI grew by 2.4 per cent compared to the previous quarter, increasing more than the real GDP (1.7 per cent), owing to increased net factor income from the rest of the world and improved terms of trade,” the BOK said.

In terms of US dollar value, the country’s per capita income came to US$31,881 in 2020, down 1 per cent from a year earlier.

Source: IANS

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Does MBA really help in getting a better job offer ?

Does MBA really help in getting a better job offer ?

Most students pursuing an MBA come with the sole objective of having a decent job offer or a promotion in the existing job soon after completion of the MBA. And most of them take loans to pursue this career dream. According to a recent survey by education portal Campusutra.com  74% MBA 2022-24 aspirants said they would opt for education loans.

There are exceptional cases like those seeking master’s degree or may have a family business to take care of or an entrepreneurial venture in mind. But the exception cases are barely 1%. For the rest 99%, a management degree is a ticket to a dream job through campus placements or leap towards career enhancements. Stakes are high as many of them quit their jobs which essentially means loss of 2 years of income, apprehension and uncertainty of the job market. On top of that, the pressure to pay back the education loans. Hence the returns have to be high. There is more than just the management degree. Colleges need to ensure that they offer quality management education which enables them to be prepared for not just the demands of recruiters and for a decent job but also to sustain and achieve, all along their career path.

  • So, what exactly are the B Schools doing to prepare their students for the job market and make them industry ready ?
  •  Are B schools ready to deliver and prepare the future business leaders to cope up with the disrupted market ?  

These are the two key questions every MBA aspirant needs to ask, check and validate before filling the MBA application forms of management institutes. And worth mentioning that these application forms do not come cheap. An MBA aspirant who may have shortlisted 5 B Schools to apply for, may end up spending Rs 10,000.00 to Rs 15,000.00 just buying MBA / PGDM application forms.

While internship and placements data of some management institutes clearly indicates that recruiters today have specific demands. The skill sets looked for are job centric and industry oriented. MBA schools which have adopted new models of delivery and technology, redesigned their courses, built an effective evaluation process and prepared the students to cope with the dynamic business scenario, have done great with campus placements despite the economic slow down.

However, the skill set being looked for by a consulting company like Deloitte or KPMG may be quite different from FMCG or a manufacturing sector. Institutes need to acknowledge this fact and act accordingly.

  • Management institutes should ensure that students are intellectually engaged, self motivated and adapt to changes fast. In one word ‘VUCA ready’.
  • B Schools should encourage students to participate in national and international competitive events, simulations of business scenarios.
  • Institutes should have the right mix of faculty members with industry exposure and pure academics.

The placement records of 2021 across top management institutes indicated the fact that recruitment is happening, skilled talent is in demand and certain management institutions continued to attract recruiters even in the middle of an ongoing crisis.

It is time, all management institutes rise to the occasion, understand market realities and identify areas of improvement at both ends – students and faculty.

After all, the stakes are high at both ends. B Schools taking corrective measures will stay while those which are lagging will end up shutting down.

Author Name : Nirmalya Pal


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