BEIJING- China’s third-quarter economic growth slowed more than expected and to its weakest pace in almost three decades as the bruising US trade war hit factory production, boosting the case for Beijing to roll out fresh support.
Gross domestic product (GDP) rose just 6.0 percent year-on-year, marking a further loss of momentum for the economy from the second quarter’s 6.2 percent growth.
China’s trading partners and investors are closely watching the health of the world’s second-largest economy as the trade war with the United States fuels fears about a global recession.
Asian stocks stumbled after the data, reversing gains made on the UK and European Union striking a long-awaited Brexit deal.
Downbeat Chinese data in recent months has highlighted weaker demand at home and abroad. Still, most analysts say the scope for aggressive stimulus is limited in an economy already saddled with piles of debt following previous easing cycles, which have sent housing prices sharply higher.
Nie Wen, a Shanghai-based economist at Hwabao Trust, pinned the worse-than-expected GDP growth mainly to weakness in export-related industries, especially the manufacturing sector.
“Given exports are unlikely to stage a comeback and a possible slowdown in the property sector, the downward pressure on China’s economy is likely to continue, with fourth-quarter economic growth expected to slip to 5.9 percent,” Nie said. – Reuters