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Malaysia's economy shrinks 17.1% in Q2, worst contraction in over 20 years

Juan Carlos Carvallo
Malaysia's economy shrinks 17.1% in Q2, worst contraction in over 20 years

KUALA LUMPUR, Aug 14 (Reuters) – Malaysia’s economy shrank by 17.1% in the second quarter from a year earlier, its worst contraction in over two decades, as strict coronavirus measures at home and abroad slammed consumer spending and exports, the central bank said on Friday.

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The downturn was far worse than the 10.0% decline forecast in a Reuters poll, and a sharp fall from the 0.7% expansion in the first quarter.

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It was the first time the economy had contracted since the global financial crisis in 2009, and marked the worst slump since the Asia financial crisis when gross domestic product shrank 11.2% in the fourth quarter of 1998.

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“We are likely to see a trough in the second quarter. The economy is poised for a recovery in the second half and rebound further in 2021,” Bank Negara Malaysia Governor Nor Shamsiah Mohd Yunus said at a virtual press conference. (Reporting by Joseph Sipalan; Editing by Ana Nicolaci da Costa)

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