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Growth

China November factories and retail sales boost 4Q growth expectations

Latest industrial output and retail sales figures from China suggest that the world’s second largest economy is back on a course of solid expansion. The recovery gives Chinese leaders room to carry on with its reforms.

Industrial output in China rose 10 percent in November, compared with the same month a year ago, according to data released by the National Bureau of Statistics (NBS) on Tuesday.

The figure marked a slight slowdown from October when the output of factories, workshops and mines grew 10.3 percent year-on-year.

However, month-on-month retail sales rose 13.7 percent in November from 13.3 percent in October, suggesting that a government policy emphasizing higher domestic consumption appears to be bearing fruit.

Analysts said the latest figures might raise expectations for stronger growth in the fourth quarter, while the structure of the economy was improving toward consumption.

In the third quarter of 2013, China's gross domestic product (GDP) expanded 7.8 percent, growing out of slowdowns in the previous two quarters of the year. The data for November came after strong export and benign inflation data, released on Monday.

According to the General Administration of Customs, China's exports picked up 12.7 percent year-on-year in November. Moreover, the inflation rate slowed to 3 percent in the month, which is well below the government's annual target of 3.5 percent.

"With a muted inflation and a pace of growth in line with China's potential, we expect the government to maintain neutral monetary and fiscal policies while increasing their efforts on carrying out structural reforms," Bank of America Merrill Lynch analysts wrote in a statement.

Last month, China's Communist rulers embarked on a course of economic reforms, including a bigger role for the private sector, further interest rate liberalization and looser currency controls. Beijing aims to move the economy away from its dependency on investment and exports by strengthening consumer demand as the key driver of growth.

uhe/kms (Reuters, AFP, dpa)

DW.DE