KUALA LUMPUR, Malaysia--Malaysia's economy grew at its fastest pace in two years in the first three months of 2017, powered by strong domestic demand, higher exports and a rise in manufacturing activity.
It was also the third consecutive quarter of growth and beat expectations. Gross domestic product rose 5.6% in the three months ended March 31 from a year earlier, according to the country's central bank, Bank Negara Malaysia, on Friday.
The figure for the first quarter exceeded the 4.5% growth recorded in the fourth quarter of last year. It was also better than the median 4.6% growth forecast by 11 economists polled earlier by The Wall Street Journal.
The first-quarter economic growth was the fastest since the first quarter of 2015, when GDP grew 5.6% from a year earlier. On a sequential basis, a closer measure of the economy's recent momentum, Malaysia's economy grew 1.8% on a seasonally adjusted basis in the latest quarter.
1st Qtr 4th Qtr
Gross Domestic Product +5.6% +4.5%
Manufacturing +5.6% +4.7%
Services Sector +5.8% +5.5%
Mining Sector +1.6% +5.0%
Agriculture Sector +8.3% -2.5%
Construction Sector +6.5% +5.1%
Private Sector Consumption +6.6% +6.1%
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(END) Dow Jones Newswires
May 19, 2017 00:14 ET (04:14 GMT)