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China Economic Indicators Sustain Momentum in March

China’s major economic indicators continued to show robust growth momentum in March, according to official data Friday, helping the world’s second-largest economy report its fastest year-on-year growth on record in the first quarter.

Industrial production, investment and consumer spending all posted double-digit percentage growth in March, though the growth rates were generally lower than those during the January-February period, which were measured against the historically low base comparison from a year ago, when the initial coronavirus outbreak paralyzed economic activity in the country.

Industrial output rose 14.1% in March compared with a year earlier, down from the 35.1% in the January-February period and lower than a 16.5% pace expected by the economists polled by The Wall Street Journal.

Compared with February, China’s industrial production rose 0.6% in March, off from February’s 0.69% on-month growth.

Retail sales, a key gauge of domestic Chinese consumption, increased 34.2% year-on-year in March, the National Bureau of Statistics reported. The result was higher than 33.8% growth in the first two months, and beat economists’ expected 28% growth.

Retail sales rose 1.75% on month in March, accelerating from February’s 0.56% pace.

China’s fixed-asset investment rose 25.6% on year in the first quarter, slowing from 35% in the January-February period. Economists expected investment to grow 26.4% in the first three months.
Source: Dow Jones

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