According to data released by the National Bureau of Statistics of China, the country’s GDP grew by 0.2% in the third quarter (quarter-on-quarter), lower than expectations of 0.5% and Q2’s 1.3%.
In annual terms, the GDP rose by 4.9%, lower than expectations of 5.2% and Q2’s 7.9% increase.
Similarly, industrial production rose in September, increasing by 3.1% though lower than expectations of 4.5%, and August’s 5.3%. In annual terms, retail sales gained 4.4%, higher than expectations of 3.3%, after falling by 2.5% in August.
“Since entering the third quarter, domestic and overseas risks and challenges have increased,” commented the National Bureau of Statistics spokesman, adding that power shortages have had a negative impact on economic performance, though such an impact is "controllable".
The spokesman was referencing the fact that many factories had to stop producing because of energy shortages, linked to surging coal prices.
Fixed asset investment went up by 7.3% in September, below expectations of 7.9%, and the previous month’s 8.9%.
It is believed that investment activities are being affected by the current tight situation in the credit markets. Analysts estimate that fixed asset investment went down by 2.5% in September (year-on-year), while real estate investment has dropped by 3.5%.
Urban unemployment levels stood at 4.9% in September, while unemployment for those aged 16 to 24 was at 14.6%.
China now struggles with the spread of the COVID-19 virus. According to official data, 96,546 cases have been reported since the beginning of the pandemic, as well as 4,636 related deaths. According to the latest reports, China has vaccinated more than 80% of the total local population, having distributed around 2.19 billion doses.
Since the beginning of the week, the Chinese yuan has not advanced against the US dollar, remaining in positive territory for the fourth consecutive week and closing yesterday's session at the 0.1554 level.