China: Industrial production grows at slowest pace in almost five years
March 13, 2014
In the January-February period, industrial production expanded 8.6% over the same period last year, which was below the 9.7% increase tallied in December. Authorities usually report the January and February data together in order to smooth out distortions related to the Chinese New Year holidays. The expansion undershot the 9.5% increase that market analysts had expected and represented the lowest reading since April 2009. The deceleration was broad-based; all of the main sub-categories of the index deteriorated in the period. On a monthly basis, industrial production expanded 0.61% in seasonally-adjusted terms in February, which was up from the 0.59% increase tallied in January. The trend deteriorated slightly at the outset of the year; annual average growth in industrial production fell from 9.7% in December to 9.5% in the January-February period. For 2014, FocusEconomics Consensus Forecast panelists expect industrial production to grow 9.6%, which is unchanged from last month's projection. In 2015, the panel sees industrial production growth edging down to 9.3%.