FINANCIAL SERVICES | Staff Reporter, Singapore

Chart of the day: Banks are bearish on business prospects in Singapore

Hiring intentions have deteriorated.

Financial institutions are pessimistic about their growth outlook in coming months, according to a report by Maybank Kim Eng.

This chart shows that business and employment expectations dropped steeply in the fourth quarter of 2015, after markets were rocked by intensifying jitters of a global growth slowdown.

The latest Business Expectations survey by the Department of Statistics showed that the services sector as a whole is bracing for business weakness from October 2015 to March 2016. The services sector posted a score of -6%, the worst since the fourth quarter of 2011.

In particular, the Financial & Insurance segment posted a score of -5%, suggesting that banks are expecting more headwinds to hinder growth.

"While hiring forecasts are firm at 12%, Financial & Insurance’s low score of 1% was a marked deterioration from its 25% in the earlier quarter," said Maybank Kim Eng.

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