Activity in China’s vast manufacturing sector hit its fastest pace in December since May 2011, a survey of private factory managers showed, with a sub-index for new orders pointing to continued strength in the new year.
The final reading for the HSBC Purchasing Managers’ Index rose to 51.5 in December, well above the preliminary reading of 50.9 published in the middle of the month and November’s final reading of 50.5.
A complementary December survey by China’s National Bureau of Statistics, due to be published on Tuesday, is expected to show similar signs of manufacturing strength. Economists polled by Reuters expect the official PMI to show a rise to 51.0 from 50.6 in November, expanding at its fastest pace in eight months.
The HSBC PMI rose above 50, the line that demarcates accelerating from slowing growth, in November for the first time in more than a year.
The survey results fit with a growing consensus that the Chinese economy revved back up in the fourth quarter, after growth slowed for the seventh consecutive quarter to 7.4 percent in the third.
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