China: A Worsening Economy and Hardball U.S. Tactics Don't Budge Beijing

May 15, 2019 | 22:15 GMT


The Big Picture

The Chinese economy has continued to slow down. With the collapse last week of a trade deal with the United States, the prospect of a protracted trade war looms large — something that could compel the Chinese government to ramp up its stimulus efforts and adjust its trade negotiating strategy.

New Chinese economic data from April has laid bare the continuing fragility of the world's second-largest economy despite Beijing's stimulus efforts. Industrial output, retail sales and investments all slowed last month, with retail sales and manufacturing investment growing at a respective 7.2 and negative 1.2 percent, their slowest pace in nearly 15 years. The data comes on top of declines in exports and manufacturing, suggesting the deceleration is occurring across the board and dampening hopes of recovery despite positive economic indicators in March. If the economic pain on display in April economic data continues, China's trade strategy could shift....

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