South Korea's industrial output rose in November from a month earlier on improving exports but consumption declined for a second consecutive month thanks to a resurgence in coronavirus cases, Statistics Korea data showed Wednesday.
Overall industrial production increased 0.7% month over month in November compared with a 0.1% on month fall in October, according to the data. On a year-over-year basis industrial output fell 0.6% in November.
Mining, manufacturing, gas and electricity production gained 0.3% on month as a result of the manufacturing of computer chips and display panels.
In a separate release Statistics Korea said retail sales dropped for a second consecutive month in November as people were unable to go out to shop as a result of virus restrictions.
Retail sales fell 0.9% from a month earlier compared with a 1% on-month decline in October, Statistics Korea said. On an annual basis sales fell 1.5%.
Sales of food and other nondurable goods rose 1.3% on month. But semidurable goods - including clothes - saw sales down 6.9%. Sales of durable goods such as cars fell 0.9%, the data showed.
Sales of winter clothes declined as a result of the virus restriction and a relatively warm winter, the agency said.
Economic data indicated an uneven economic recovery, as the country's exports are improving, while private consumption remained weak owing to the protracted pandemic.
In November, South Korea's exports grew 4% year over year on the back of sales of semiconductor chips.
The economy grew at a faster-than-estimated pace of 2.1% quarter over quarter in the third three months of the year thanks to a recovery in exports.
The Bank of Korea has upgraded its 2020 growth outlook to a 1.1% contraction from a previous forecast of a 1.3% contraction. The finance ministry expects the economy to shrink 1.1% for the year.