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China's Industrial Profits Suffer First Year-on-Year Fall in Almost Three Years

China's economy has been facing increasing downward pressure this year as a trade dispute with the United States.

Reuters
    Dec 27, 2018 4:05 AM  PT
China's Industrial Profits Suffer First Year-on-Year Fall in Almost Three Years

BEIJING (Reuters) - Profits at China's industrial firms fell 1.8 percent to 594.8 billion yuan ($86.36 billion) in November from a year earlier, the first contraction since Dec 2015, and compared with a 3.6 percent gain in October, the National Bureau of Statistics said on Thursday.

In the first eleven months of 2018, industrial profits rose 11.8 percent year-on-year, slower than a 13.6 percent rise in the first ten months.

China's industrial firms' liabilities increased 5.8 percent from a year earlier as of end-November, down from a 5.9 percent rise from the end of October.

China's economy has been facing increasing downward pressure this year as a trade dispute with the United States, slowing global growth and a years-long deleveraging campaign hit demand.

Policymaker have vowed to keep economic growth within "a reasonable range" in 2019.

At the same time, China plans to facilitate the issuance of local government bonds by improving credit rating and information disclosure rules, as well as market liquidity, the Shanghai Securities News reported on Thursday, citing regulators.

Some local governments plan to issue bonds next January, earlier than in previous years, while the total amount of fundraising via local government bond issuance has room to increase next year, the newspaper said.

The National Debt Association of China (NDAC) plans to publish guidelines for the credit rating business on local government bonds as soon as possible, and is also studying rules to improve information disclosure by local governments, the article said.

Currently, all bonds issued by local governments received the top AAA rating, which doesn't reflect the difference in creditworthiness between local governments, the newspaper said, citing NDAC chairwoman Sun Xiaoxia.

Another priority is to improve liquidity in the local government bond market, with plans to expand the investor base - currently dominated by banks - to include smaller institutions and retail investors, the article said, citing NDAC general manager Chen Gangming.


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