China’s Exports and Imports Grow More Than Expected in October

China’s General Administration of Customs reported on Thursday that its exports and imports exceeded forecasts for the month of October.

According to Reuters, in the first 10 months of this year, China’s cumulative trade surplus with the US was $258.15 billion. However, China’s recorded trade surplus with the US slipped from $34.13 in September to $31.78 in October which was lower than the $35 billion economists had expected.

The 11 percent growth for dollar-denominated exports which was expected by economists who were polled a year ago in October by Reuters was exceeded by a 15.6 percent rise. And on-year for September exports grew by 14.5 percent.

This phenomenon, economist say, is a result of exporters benefiting from increased orders placed mostly before the tariffs hit. But in the months ahead the figures are likely to show stress.

Andy Xie, an independent economist said that robust growth, both globally and in the US boosted Chinese growth in exports.

Meanwhile, Chinese imports denominated in dollars topped the 14 percent expectations from a year ago by 21.4 percent and imports for September grew 14.3 percent on-year.

Xie told CNC on Thursday that despite heavier tariff on Chinese imports, what is offsetting most of the impact is a sharp decline in the Chinese yuan.

Amidst a bitter trade dispute between China and the US, the world’s two largest economies, economic data from China is being closely watched because of the massive US trade deficit with China with which US President Trump is taking issue.

Chinese data show its economy is holding up despite the escalating trade tension between the two countries.

However, in the third quarter of this year, China reported, at 6.5 percent, its weakest economic growth pace since the first quarter of 2009 which it has been trying to manage even before the escalating trade tensions with the US which is now complicating those efforts.

Xie also said that if China’s property bubble growth slows in the months ahead it may be due to domestic factors such as over-exuberant property markets which would affect government land sales, infrastructure building, property sales and eventually, the macro economy.

With this in mind, Xie says, Beijing has a timely and handy excuse to shift the blame of their economic slowdown to their trade dispute with the US and Washington.

A meeting between President Trump and President XI Jinxing later this month at the the G-20 in Buenos Aires, Argentina is being closely watched.

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