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Adds comment from NBS official
China's July economic indicators fell short of market expectations as consumption failed to rebound as positively as expected. Industrial output stalled after accelerating for three consecutive months, though improved investment in property and infrastructure continued to underpin the rebound, according to data released by the National Bureau of Statistics on Friday.
Here are some of the data highlights:
- Industrial production grew 4.8% y/y in July, flat from the gain in June and falling short of the 5.1% forecast.
- Retail sales fell 1.1% y/y in July, recovering from the 1.8% decline in June, but still shy of the 0.2% projected result.
- Fixed-asset Investment fell 1.6% y/y for the first seven months, narrowing from the 3.1% fall in H1 and meeting the projection. This was partly due to the slow recovery in manufacturing investment, which fell 10.2% after the 11.7% decline in the Jan-Jun period.
- Infrastructure investment growth recovered to -1.0% in Jan-Jul from the 2.7% fall in H1. Meanwhile, property investment growth expanded to 3.4% y/y, growing for the second month from the previous 1.9%.
- Registered urban unemployment remained steady at 5.7%, flat from last month. The rate in 31 major cities also remained flat at 5.8% from June.
- China's economy "is more dependent on domestic demand now" after switching from an export-driven model following the 2008 financial crisis, said NBS spokeswoman Fu Linghui, when asked to comment on the economic impact of possible China-U.S. decoupling.
- As pandemic restrictions ease and policies to stabilize employment take effect, the unemployment rate of migrant workers fell to 5.7% in July from 6.4% in April. By the end of Q2, 177.5 million migrant workers returned to the job market, close to 97.3% of the same period last year, said Fu. However, the unemployment rate of university graduates is 3.3 percentage points higher than last July, Fu added.