Growth of South Korean households' financial assets reached an all-time low this year amid prolonged low interest rates, government data showed Sunday.
The average financial assets of local households stood at 97.8 million won (US$90,600) as of the end of March, up a mere 1.5 percent from a year earlier, according to the data from Statistics Korea, the Financial Supervisory Service and the Bank of Korea.
It marked the lowest on-year gain since 2012, when those agencies began compiling related data.
Comparable figures were 3.8 percent in 2016, 3.1 percent in 2015, 2.1 percent in 2014 and 8.4 percent in 2013.
Household financial assets are comprised of bank deposits, installment savings, investments in stocks and bonds, and security deposits.
Household savings averaged 72.8 million won as of end-March, up 1.3 percent from a year earlier. It was also the lowest on-year increase rate.
The slow growth rate of household financial assets was attributed mainly to a long period of low interest rates here. South Korea's central bank cut the key rate to 1.75 percent in March 2015, ushering in the era of the benchmark rate hovering below 2 percent.
The rate was further cut to 1.5 percent in June that year and a record low of 1.25 percent in June last year before being hiked to 1.5 percent last month. (Yonhap)
Lee Sam-sun firstname.lastname@example.org
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