China Panel Survey

“Stable and satisfactory numbers from China – LNU’s “Temperature Indicator at 6.0“

Thursday, May 3rd, 2018

Summary

In the second half of April, Linnaeus University prepared its traditional spring survey on the business climate and economic conditions in China, both with shorter and longer time perspectives. The (independent) responding China experts – around 15 of them – come from Asia, the U.S. and Europa – thanks a lot!

“LNU’s China Panel remains cautiously confident on China – despite the obvious risks”

¤  LNU’s “Temperature Indicator” for GDP growth in China remained stable at 6.0 in April compared to 6.1 in December 2017 (10 means “very hot” on the scale) – still satisfactory despite the small decrease.

¤  The panel expects Chinese GDP growth to come in at 6.5 percent in 2018 as a whole – 0.3 higher than predicted last December and at – somewhat slower – 6,2 percent in q4 2018. For 2019, our forecasters see Chinese GDP grow with 6.2 percent as well. This latter number – if achieved in reality – would certainly be acceptable inside and outside China.

¤   More than half of the forecasters (54 percent) see rather a downward bias in their own GDP prediction than an upward bias – and around one third no bias at all.

¤  There are divided views on the course of the currency RMB in 2018 but most experts expect a slight depreciation (1-5 percent) of the RMB against the  U.S. dollar in 2018.

¤   GDP growth on average until 2023 is seen at 5.6 percent.

Read the full article here, ChinaPanelSurvey May 2018

 

Hubert Fromlet
Affiliate Professor at the School of Business and Economics, Linnaeus University
Editorial board

 

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China’s National Bureau of Statistics praises the country’s political leader(s) for good GDP growth in 2017

Thursday, January 18th, 2018

This morning, China’s National Bureau of Statistics (NBS) announced that GDP had risen by 6.9 percent in 2017, well in line with the official objective of “6.5 percent or more”. China’s political leader XI Jinping is praised particularly for this result by the statisticians. Having read the document, I would like to add some comments on the new statistical numbers for 2017.

  1. Expected result: The China Survey Panel of Linnaeus University (chinaresearch.se) predicted in December a GDP growth for 2017 at roughly 6 ½ percent. My own estimate, however, was somewhat higher, i.e. at 6.8 percent because of the obviously good mood and optimism shown by most of the important political leaders. In my eyes – without further discussing the credibility of Chinese statistics – achieved GDP growth at the upper end of the official objective was very predictable.
  2. Services somewhat disappointing: The downsizing of the growth rate for the primary and secondary industry is visible again in the latest annual statistics. However, one must wonder why the production of services rose by just 0.1 percent to 8.2 compared to 8.1 in 2016. One could have expected a somewhat higher increase since the expansion of the service sector has so much political priority.
  3. Investment in secondary industry continues to weaken: The development of investments during 2017 pointed in the right direction: slowing down of investments by the secondary industry but good investment growth of the high-tech industry and the tertiary sector. Investment in residential buildings picked up strongly also in 2017 but it seems still unclear where healthy equilibria between supply and demand in the residential housing sector of major cities may be located. Thus, bubble and debt risks still exist also from this angle.
  4. Too little information about private consumption: The official accounting of private consumption still shows obvious shortcomings in classification. Double-digit increases of retail sales indicate, however, that private consumption in China should have developed quite well in the recent year. But more detailed information about the composition of private consumption would have been appreciated.
  5. Supply-side reforms on track: The Chinese mean – unlike Westerners – by supply-side policy mainly the modernization of production structures and capacity (reducing overcapacity in traditional sectors and achieving visible progress for the innovation-driven enterprises) – and also improvements of the environment. According to the NBS further supply-side progress was noted in 2017. This is positive and should probably not be doubted – and will remain crucial for the future development of China.

 

Hubert Fromlet
Affiliate Professor at the School of Business and Economics, Linnaeus University
Editorial board

 

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LNU’s China Panel No 24 – December 22, 2017 – “Satisfactory numbers from China”

Friday, December 22nd, 2017

Summary

In the beginning of December, Linnaeus University prepared its traditional winter survey on the business climate and economic conditions in China, both with shorter and longer time perspectives. The independent responding China experts – around 15 of them – come from Asia, the U.S. and Europa – thanks a lot!

“Satisfactory numbers from China”

¤  LNU’s “Temperature Indicator” for GDP growth remained quite stable at 6.1 this December compared to 6.4 in May 2017 (10 means very hot on the scale) – still satisfactory despite the small decrease.

¤  The panel expects Chinese GDP growth to come in at 6.2 percent in 2018 as a whole and at – somewhat slower – 6 percent in q4 2018. But also this latter number would still be acceptable inside and outside China.

¤  The forecasts of the panel have rather a downward than an upward bias.

¤  There are very divided views on the course of the currency RMB in 2018.

¤   GDP growth is seen at 5.6 percent on average until 2022 (five years from now).

Please click the picture to zooom.

Download and read the full article here, ChinaPanelSurveyDecember2017

 

Hubert Fromlet
Affiliate Professor at the School of Business and Economics, Linnaeus University
Editorial board

 

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