China Industrial Profits Extend Growth Streak at Year’s Start
Chinese industrial companies’ profits rose 17.2 percent in the January-February period, extending a four-month streak of gains and bolstering a rebound in the world’s second-biggest economy.
Net income increased from a year earlier to 709.2 billion yuan ($114 billion), the National Bureau of Statistics said on its website today. That compares with a 5.2 percent decline in the same period last year and a 17.3 percent gain in December. The bureau doesn’t release separate data for January and February because of distortions caused by the weeklong Lunar New Year holiday.
Higher profits will help boost investment and aid new Premier Li Keqiang in sustaining a recovery after industrial production and retail sales had the weakest start to a year since 2009. Manufacturing is expanding at a faster-than-forecast pace this month, a private survey showed last week.
“Profit growth will continue to recover” partly because of the economic rebound, Yao Wei, China economist at Societe Generale SA in Hong Kong, said before the release. “It will help boost investment growth although maybe not as significantly as before because of the existing excess capacity.”
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