China continues to pursue a trade agreement with the US while its economy again suffered slower growth in August, the Wall Street Journal reported on Monday September 16th.
The manufacturing sector and the sales data gave unmistakable signs of low demand from wary businesses and consumers. Economists predicted a small recovery from July, when economic activity sank to its lowest level in more than ten years.
The National Bureau of Statistics said on Monday that value-added industrial output in China rose 4.4% in August from a year earlier. Economists had expected growth of 5.2%.
Li Wei, an economist at Standard Chartered Bank, warned against the prospect of destocking and reduced investment as companies continue to experience low demand.
“It’s now all about the government’s tolerance for slower growth and what kind of policy tools they want to use to stimulate growth,” Li said.
According to the Wall Street Journal, China’s Premier Li Keqiang said the economy in the first eight months of 2019 was stable and exhibited some signs of improvement.
“Against the backdrop of a complicated international situation and given the higher base of comparison, it is not very easy for China to still sustain a medium-to-high growth speed of above 6%,” the premier said. “Such a speed still ranks high among the world’s major economies.”
Fu Linghui, a statistics bureau spokesperson, said some of the causes of the economic problems were due to powerful storms and other non-permanent agents.