China’s retail sales up 3.9% in November, slower than expected

A customer buys zodiac decorations for the year of the Tiger at a market in Zhangjiagang city, eastern China’s Jiangsu province, December 10, 2021.

Shi Bairong | Publishing Future | beautiful pictures

BEIJING – China’s retail sales missed expectations in November, while industrial production beat, the National Bureau of Statistics said on Wednesday.

Retail sales in November rose 3.9% from a year ago, less than the 4.6% growth forecast for the same period last year according to a Reuters poll.

Industrial production rose 3.8% in November from a year ago, topping the poll’s 3.6% expectation.

Fixed-asset investment in the year to November rose 5.2 percent year-on-year, slower than the poll’s 5.4 percent forecast.

China’s economy has faced pressure from a downturn in the property market as Beijing seeks to curb developers’ reliance on debt. Real estate, along with related industries, accounts for about a quarter of China’s gross domestic product, according to Moody’s.

Intermittent travel restrictions to keep the pockets of Covid cases in check have also restricted travel and business activity, while consumer spending has dropped.

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Exports remain the bright spot for the Chinese economy, and rose 22% in November from a year ago.

The Chinese authorities have limited stimulus money to the economy and have acted more cautiously amid rising inflation and tighter monetary policy in other countries.

However, the People’s Bank of China cut the reserve requirement ratio for most banks effective Wednesday.

The move marks the second drop this year in the amount of cash banks need to keep in reserve. According to the central bank, a 0.5 percentage point cut to an average of 8.4% for financial institutions frees up 1.2 trillion yuan ($187.5 million).

This is a breaking news story. Please check back for updates.

– Correction: This article has been updated to remove an incorrect historical reference China’s retail sales growth rate. China’s retail sales up 3.9% in November, slower than expected

Sarah Ridley

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