China’s GDP to grow 6.8% in Q1: Goldman Sachs

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Beijing, April 9 (IANS) China’s economy will remain solid in the first quarter of 2017, growing 6.8 per cent from a year earlier, Goldman Sachs forecast.

The bank in a report said purchasing managers’ index (PMI) readings from both official and private surveys have implied firm activity growth overall. It expected China’s GDP growth to reach 6.6 per cent for 2017, Xinhua news agency reported.

Goldman Sachs expected China’s industrial production to rise 6.4 per cent in March, slightly higher than the 6.3 per cent growth for January and February.

Fixed asset investment growth is likely to remain strong, expanding 8.9 per cent in the first three months of the year, unchanged from that in the first two months, according to Goldman Sachs.

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It expected weaker auto sales to continue weighing on the country’s retail sales, which may increase 9.4 per cent in March, slowing from the 9.5 per cent growth registered in the first two months.

The bank said growth of the country’s consumer price index (CPI), a main gauge of inflation, may rebound to 1.3 per cent in March from 0.8 per cent in February as distortions from the Chinese New Year effect disappeared.

In the fourth quarter of 2016, China’s economy grew 6.8 per cent year on year. The Chinese government has targeted growth of around 6.5 per cent this year.

The country is scheduled to release its first-quarter economic data, including GDP growth, fixed asset investment, industrial output and retail sales, on April 17.

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