SEOUL, KOREA – With the gross national products at a standstill, the aggregate savings rate has fallen to a record-low level. According to the Bank of Korea and the Korea Statistical Office on December 12, Korea's savings rate as of the third quarter in 2012 was 30.4 percent, lowest since the third quarter 1982 when the figure was 27.9 percent.
The decline can be attributed to the plunge in the savings rate for individuals. In 1988 when the total savings rate hit the record high at 41.5 percent, the individual savings rate was 18.7 percent, which meant that the share of individuals in the total savings was 46.2 pecent.
But the share has kept falling since that time, falling as low as to 4.3 percent in 2011. The share of individuals in the total savings was only 13.5 percent in 2011.
Koh Ga-Young, a researcher with LG Economic Research Institute, said, "The falling savings rate is due to an insufficient ability to save. A low savings rate will lead to a lower future growth rate as there is less capital for investment."
*Article provided by The Korea Economic Daily
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