China’s economic rebound was evident as the first hard economic numbers of the year, released on Friday, showed a surge in exports and imports that was not solely explained by the timing of the Lunar New Year holiday.
Exports grew 25 percent year-on-year in January versus a forecast of 17 percent in a Reuters poll, while imports surged 28.8 percent to comfortably beat a consensus call of 23.3 percent. January’s trade surplus was $29.2 billion versus a market expectation of $22 billion.
“I think the Chinese New Year effect only explains part of the story,” Zhang Zhiwei, chief China economist at Nomura in Hong Kong, told Reuters. “After controlling for the Chinese New Year, the numbers are still very strong and shows the economic recovery is on track.”
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