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February 4, 2017

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Home » Business » Economy

Growth in the private sector sees slowdown

MANUFACTURING activity in China’s private sector grew at a slower pace in January as output and new orders weakened, a survey showed yesterday.

The Caixin China General Manufacturing PMI dipped to 51 last month from a 47-month high of 51.9 in December, according to a survey by financial services company Markit.

A figure above 50 indicates expansion.

New orders continued to increase but the rate of expansion slowed from December and was moderate overall, the report said.

Production recorded its slowest expansion since September, while the rate of job losses was its highest for three months due to firms cutting costs.

“The sub-indexes for output and new orders both weakened sharply from those in the preceding month, while stocks of purchases and finished goods both slid into contraction territory,” said Zhong Zhengsheng, director of macroeconomic analysis at CEBM Group. “Manufacturers appear to have become rather reluctant to restock. Input prices and output charges continued to rise rapidly, but at slower rates than in the previous month.”

He said the continued expansion in manufacturing activities indicated that the economy maintained stable growth in January, but the sub-indexes showed that the current growth may be hard to sustain.

“We must remain wary of downward pressures on the economy this year,” Zhong said.

The weakening of the manufacturing PMI echoed the lower official PMI of 51.3 points for January, edging down 0.1 points from December, according to National Bureau of Statistics figures released on Wednesday.

Weaker sub-indexes for production and new orders contributed to the decline, which bureau analyst Zhao Qinghe attributed this to reduced working days due to the Spring Festival.

The official non-manufacturing PMI was up 0.1 points to 54.6.

Financial, insurance, and Internet and software information technology were among the fastest growing service sectors, while the transport, catering and property sectors all reported contractions, according to the bureau’s figures.


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