Monday, April 27, 2009

Bamboo Shoots?

China bulls have pointed to its large stimulus package, the surge in credit over the past months, and the sharp rebound in the stock exchange as signs that China may lead the world out of this global slump. But the latest data on power usage and generation - a leading indicator of economic activity - belies these sanguine predictions of an imminent turnaround in China. From China Stakes:
A February bounce in power generation that continued in the first half of March was welcomed by economic policy makers, not least Premier Wen Jiabao, as a sign of recovery. It was, perhaps, a false hope as power generation again declined in late March. China Electricity Regulatory Commission officials predict a 4% decline in power generation in April....

According to statistics from the State Grid, power generation dropped 0.7% year on year in March, after a rise of 5.9% in February and a fall of 12.3% in January. Experts believe the fallback indicates economic uncertainties. State Grid figures also show that power generation in the first quarter of this year dropped 2.25%, year on year.

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