China Numbers That Count

Andy Rothman reviews data points that offer insights into the coming quarters.

Key Takeaways

  • China’s economy is weak, but not in crisis.
  • Confidence among entrepreneurs and households has been shaken by poorly explained and poorly implemented economic and regulatory policies.
  • I believe confidence can be restored if Beijing takes steps that demonstrate it is creating a clear and stable policy environment which supports the private sector.
  • Pragmatic policy changes are likely after first quarter GDP growth will be too slow to support Xi Jinping’s expected full-year target of around 5%.

The Chinese government recently announced a GDP growth rate of 5.2% year-over-year for 2023. That was fast, but that isn’t one of the more important data points for investors trying to understand China’s prospects for 2024.