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First Quarter Likely a Bottom for China
13 Apr 2012 EDT - CNBC.com
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You could already hear the bears on China on the disappointing first-quarter gross domestic product numbers (8.1 percent, below 8.3 percent expected and the lowest level since March 2009).

But there are several signs the Chinese economy likely bottomed in the first quarter:

a) March bank lending figures hit a 14-month high;

b) crude steel production in March (61.58 millions metric tons) is at an all-time high; and

c) industrial production and retail sales were stronger in March.

Get the point? Somebody must be expecting a recovery of some sort.

Mizuho was one of many firms that came out overnight projecting that China would bottom in the first quarter...they are sticking by forecasts of 8.6 percent GDP growth in 2012.

China’s Shanghai Index went up 0.4 percent on speculation China would get even more aggressive in loosening monetary policy.

The main worry for China: slow exports. The downturn in the euro zone is a major problem, so much of China's GDP predictions depend on what side of the euro recession story you are on: mild, with a rebound by the fourth quarter, or more severe, with the euro zone remaining in recession well into 2013?

Elsewhere:

1) JPMorgan Chase and Wells Fargo beat on the top-line and bottom-line: It’s about expanding the mortgage business.

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