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Arjen van Dijkhuizen, senior economist at ABN AMRO, suggests that the China’s March activity data published over the past weeks clearly pointed to an improving momentum, compared to the weakness seen in late 2018.

Key Quotes

“Industrial production growth surged to 8.5% yoy (Jan-Feb: 5.3%) – with manufacturing output particularly strong -, although this number is likely impacted somewhat by Lunar New Year effect (with a sharp drop in March 2018).”

“Fixed asset investment also accelerated further, rising to 6.3% yoy ytd (from 6.1% in Jan-Feb). That was supported primarily by a further improvement of state-led investment, a result of fiscal stimulus measures.”

“Retail sales growth surged to 8.7% yoy (Jan/Feb: 8.2%). The March PMIs published some weeks ago showed a clear uptick from February; the composite PMIs of both NBS and Caixin jumped by 1.5-2 points.”

“These strong activity data (particularly industrial production) also caused a jump in Bloomberg’s monthly GDP estimate, to 7.92% yoy in March (Feb: 6.63%), the highest number since December 2012.”