China Jan-Feb steel output rises from December on strong margins

China Jan-Feb steel output rises from December on strong margins

China Jan-Feb steel output rises from December on strong margins

Consumption contributed 76.2 percent to the country's GDP growth past year.

China's manufacturers are facing weaker sales at home and overseas, with exports hit by U.S. tariffs on Chinese goods and cooling global demand.

Data released on Thursday showed that refineries' output in China in the first two months of 2019 increased by 6.1 percent compared to a year ago based on a daily basis record because the emerging privately owned refineries started the operations of their processing facilities.

Fixed-asset investment rose 6.1% in the first two months, from 5.9% in 2018.

China's daily steel output rose in January and February, as mills in the world's top producer ramped up production amid firm steel margins and easier environmental restrictions.

Average daily steel output over the two months reached 2.54 million tonnes, up from 2.46 million tonnes in December and 2.32 million tonnes in the same months past year, according to Reuters calculations based on official data. Last year's holiday fell later, so its full effect was not felt during the two-month period.

Analysts polled by Reuters had expected it to rise 6.0 percent, edging up marginally from 5.9 percent in 2018.

Private sector fixed-asset investment also lost a step, rising 7.5 percent versus an increase of 8.7 percent in 2018.

But the rate of growth remains stuck around 15-year lows, highlighting concerns that consumers are growing less confident as the economy slows.

The production pick-up followed a rise in profit margins at steel mills over January and February, with earnings from making construction product rebar jumping more than 20 percent from December, according to data tracked by Jinrui Futures.

Data on Thursday showed China's property investment quickened in the January-February period driven by strong demand in smaller cities.

China's state planner announced measures in January to boost consumption of goods ranging from eco-friendly appliances to big-ticket items such as cars, but the size and scope of the subsidy scheme is still unclear.

"The growth trend of the modern service industry is relatively good", Mao said, adding that information transmission, software and information technology industries maintained a high growth rate of 26.5 percent. Infrastructure spending ticked up 4.3% in January and February, from 3.8% the same time previous year.

Latest News