In another sign the local economy is on the recovery track, foreign investment banks have raised their economic growth outlooks for Korea.
The Korea Center for International Finance said Citigroup has raised its projection for Korea this year by two percentage points to 3.9 percent. It also upwardly revised its forecast for next year by one-tenth of a point to 4 percent.
Credit Suisse's forecast was also positive. HSBC said Korea will not experience a long period of stagnation like Japan because there is such a low risk of deflation and the country's market share is on the rise.
However, Goldman Sachs warned that slowing exports and weakening domestic demand as well as the strong local currency could pose downside risks.