Retail in Asia

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AmResearch upgrades growth forecast for Malaysian economy

Malaysia’s economic data for the fourth quarter of 2009 is expected to surprise the market with stronger growth, prompting investment-research company AmResearch to upgrade its growth forecast to 3.5 percent from 1.5 percent.

"We have [also] upgraded our forecast to 4 percent in 2010 from 3.5 percent in September, pinned by positive factors such as public spending averaging RM1 billion per month until end of this year," says senior economist Manokaran Mottain.

Other factors that prompted the upgrades included a recent reduction in personal income tax rates and the improved economy, which has helped to raise private consumption, recovery in private investment activity as well as global demand for Malaysian-made goods.