China's Economy to Expand 8.4% in Q1
China will keep in place its prudent monetary and fiscal policies and continue to stimulate consumer spending, Zhang Xiaoqiang, deputy director of the National Development and Reform Commission, said at the annual Boao Forum for Asia in Hainan. Gross domestic product will grow 8.4% and the consumer price index will rise 3.5% in Q1 2012, Zhang predicted.
Non-Manufacturing PMI Above 53
China's non-manufacturing purchasing managers index rose 0.7 points from a month earlier to 58 in March, signaling a strong service sector, according to figures from the National Bureau of Statistics and the China Federation of Logistics and Purchasing. By contrast, HSBC's reading for the index was 53.3, lower than the 53.9 reported for February.
China's Bank Loans to Total ¥8-8.5t in 2012
China's bank lending will grow 15.5% year on year to ¥880 billion in March and total ¥8 trillion to ¥8.5 trillion this year, Bank of Communications Co (SHA: 601328, HKG: 3328) estimated. The nation's fifth largest lender cast a pall over interest rate cuts but was positive of reserve ratio cuts following moderately eased monetary policies.
Rail Passenger Traffic Up 2.7% in Mar
China's rail passenger traffic rose 2.7% year on year to 144.92 million people in March, the Ministry of Railways said. Rail cargo traffic was up 2% to a record 342.83 million tons in the same month.
$1 = ¥6.3