China HSBC Dec flash manufacturing PMI firms to 50.9
The HSBC flash purchasing managers' index for December rose to 50.9, a 14- month high and the fifth straight monthly gain. A figure above 50 indicates that growth is accelerating, while one below 50 shows slowing growth.
The flash survey – issued earlier in the month than usual ahead of the Christmas holidays – follows a raft of data that suggest annual economic growth has quickened in the fourth quarter after it slowed for seven consecutive quarters to 7.4 percent. Still, China is on track this year for its slowest full-year growth since 1999.
Improving conditions are primarily driven by domestic demand, said Hongbin Qu, China chief economist at HSBC.
"The drop of new export orders and the downside surprise of November exports growth suggest the persisting external headwinds. This calls for Beijing to keep an accommodative policy stance to counter-balance the external weakness, provided inflation stays benign," Qu added.
Most sub-indexes improved with the exception of output and new export orders, which dipped, possibly reflecting softer end-of-year orders. Encouragingly, a sub- index on new orders rose for the fifth month in a row to 52.7, its highest level since April 2011.
The PMI figures also suggested some improvement in margins for manufacturers as a sub-index tracking output prices rose while one tracking input prices
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