BEIJING: China factory activity probably maintained a solid rate of expansion in December, as the world’s second-largest economy is slowly recovering from the coronavirus crisis, a Reuters poll showed on Tuesday.
According to the median forecast of 27 economists surveyed by Reuters, the official manufacturing Purchasing Manager’s Index (PMI) is projected to decline to 52.0 in December from 52.1 in November. A reading above 50 indicates a monthly expansion of operation.
China is on track to become the first to shake off the drag of widespread market shutdowns altogether. In more than three years, November’s PMI reading was the largest.
In November, profits at Chinese industrial companies grew robustly for a seventh month of gains. It backed by solid industrial output and sales.
For the full year, the Chinese economy is projected to rise by around 2%. It is the lowest in more than three decades. However, it still much better than other global economies still struggling to contain virus infections.
According to a survey by China Beige Book released Monday, about two-thirds of executives in China said the country’s recovery to pre-COVID conditions is still more than three months away.
In a statement released alongside the survey results, “China Beige Book data continue to show a less robust recovery than official statistics,” said Leland Miller, the CEO of the U.S.-based consultancy.
Both the official PMI, which focuses primarily on large and state-owned companies, and its sister service sector survey, will be published on Dec. 31.
The Caixin Manufacturing PMI Private Sector will be published on Jan. 4, and the Caixin Services PMI Survey will be published on Jan. 6.
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