TAIPEI - Taiwan's export orders in February are likely to have fallen for a second month but at a far slower pace due partly to a low base, a Reuters poll showed, as the coronavirus epidemic threatens to hurt demand for the island's tech products.
The median forecast from 15 economists polled was for export orders to contract 0.6% from the previous year. Forecasts ranged widely from a 15% decline to 19.3% growth.
That compared with a 12.8% decline in January - the steepest in nearly seven years.
The coronavirus health crisis deepened in China in February but some analysts expect the low base of comparison to have helped orders for the month.
The week-long Lunar New Year fell in February last year but occurred in January this year.
Taiwan's export orders are a leading indicator of demand for Asia's exports and for hi-tech gadgets, and typically lead actual exports by two to three months.