China’s manufacturing industry weakened for a fifth straight month, according to a preliminary measure for March released Monday, deepening concern the nation will miss its 7.5% growth target this year.
The Purchasing Managers’ Index from HSBC Holdings Plc and Markit Economics dropped to 48.1, compared with the 48.7 median estimate of 22 analysts surveyed by Bloomberg News and February’s final 48.5 figure. Numbers above 50 signal expansion.
BEIJING — China surprised markets with a thumping trade performance in January as import growth hit a six-month high, drawing some scepticism about the data but still allaying fears of a deepening economic malaise.
Analysts who had expected the long Lunar New Year holiday to drag on January’s trade warned that the figures may be inflated by fake trade transactions, where traders forge deals to sneak cash into the country past capital controls.