SKorea Oct manufacturing sentiment dips slightly

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SEOUL, Oct 1 (Reuters) A key measure of South Korean manufacturers' business sentiment in October edged down after hitting a 17-month high in September, a central bank survey showed on Monday.

The business survey index for manufacturers slipped to 94 for October from 95 in September, when it rose to its highest since reaching 97 in April last year, the Bank of Korea said in a statement.

The index snapped three consecutive months of increases after readings of 89 in August and 86 in July.

An index below 100 means companies expecting business conditions to worsen outnumber those predicting an improvement.

''During our survey, external conditions such as stronger South Korean currency against the dollar, higher oil prices and a drop in semiconductor prices have contributed to the fall, but the overall upward stance is still seen valid,'' the central bank said in the statement.

The Bank of Korea last week said consumer sentiment hit a five-year high in the third quarter taking scant account of global financial turbulence and bolstering the outlook for Asia's fourth-largest economy.

Reuters MP VP0435

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