Chile economy posts biggest jump in growth in six years

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SANTIAGO, Aug 20 (Reuters) – Chile’s gross domestic product grew 5.3 percent in the second-quarter of 2018 compared with a year earlier, its biggest jump in nearly six years, the central bank said on Monday.

The sharp increase in growth, up 0.7 percent over the first quarter of 2018 according to bank figures, came amid strength in the manufacturing and commerce sectors.

The bank predicts growth will increase by between 3.25 and 4 percent in 2018.

The mining industry in Chile, the world’s top copper producer, lagged slightly behind the rest of the economy, growing 4.8 percent as copper prices slumped on concerns over heightening trade tensions between the United States and China.

Monday’s figures were the highest since conservative President Sebastian Pinera’s previous term, between 2010-2014. Pinera took office in early March promising to combat economic “stagnation” in the South American country.

The bank said domestic demand had jumped 6 percent, spurred by increases in consumption at the household level and by investment.

(By Dave Sherwood; Editing by Chizu Nomiyama)

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