Chinese business conditions improved in January, with new orders rising, in further evidence of companies re-stocking ahead of anticipated higher demand early this year.
The Flash MNI China Business Sentiment Indicator from MNI, a unit of Deutsche Boerse Group, found that expansion was gaining traction in January, rising to 54.94, from a final figure of 52.22 in December. A number above 50 indicates growth. A number below 50 denotes contraction.
The monthly Flash MNI China Business Sentiment Indicator is released one week ahead of the final MNI survey, and is based on about 80 per cent of the responses already gathered for the final survey, and is intended to give a preliminary indication of business sentiment.
MNI said the new orders indicator also rose to 54.55, compared to 51.05 in the the final survey for December.
However, the financial positions index, which gauges corporates’ financial strength, sank to 49.67 from 50.89 in the final survey for December.
The availability of credit index also fell to 45.69 in January from 46.96 in December, and the production index fell to 53.08 from 55.37 in December.
The Flash MNI China Business Sentiment Indicator survey coincides with the release of official data earlier on Friday showing that China’s gross domestic product (GDP) growth rose 7.9 per cent year-on-year in the fourth quarter, and 7.8 per cent for last year overall, beating market estimates and supporting forecasts that the world’s second biggest economy would dodge a hard landing.
Economists expect China’s GDP this year to rise by 8.1 per cent, driven by rising fixed asset investment and domestic consumption.