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SKorea's economy rises 0.4 percent

SEOUL, South Korea (AP) -- South Korea's economy growth expanded 0.4 percent in the final quarter of 2012 as a decline in capital investment by corporations narrowed.

Bank of Korea's estimate showed Thursday that South Korea's economic growth picked up speed slightly in the October-December period from the previous quarter. In the third quarter, the economy posted growth of 0.1 percent, the slowest pace in more than three years.

For full-year 2012, Asia's fourth-largest economy grew 2 percent over 2011, the weakest annual performance in three years.

The bank says a fourth-quarter rise in consumer spending and a smaller decline in capital investment helped the economy. But growth was still fragile, as weak investment in equipment and other assets by corporations persisted and exports fell.