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Report shows China's manufacturing PMI at 3-month high


08:27, October 25, 2012

BEIJING, Oct. 24 (Xinhua) -- A preliminary report into China's manufacturing sector shows rising new orders in the three months to the end of October, a HSBC report showed Wednesday.

The preliminary version of HSBC's monthly purchasing managers' index (PMI) rose to a three-month high of 49.1, the British bank said.

The reading was still below 50, which indicates a contraction but it was an improvement from 47.9 in September, the banks' data showed.

The figure indicates signs of a rebound in the world's second largest economy.

Pro-growth measures introduced by the government this year have started to take effect on the market, helping boost domestic demand and confidence of enterprises, according to the report.

China's economic growth slowed to a seventh straight quarter low of 7.4 percent from July to September amid weak demand both at home and abroad.

The government has twice lowered banks' reserve requirement ratios and interest rates, speeded up infrastructure investment and expanded fiscal spending to buoy the economy.

The reading is in line with the trend indicated by official data. Official PMI rose to 49.8 percent last month from 49.2 percent in August, ending a decline for four straight months.

It adds to the market's optimism over a slight rebound in the fourth quarter of the year, as key economic data released earlier in the month showed improvements in both investment and retail sales.

However, HSBC economist Qu Hongbin warned of weak external demand and a slack job market, suggesting a continuation of policy easing to secure a stronger recovery.

The official non-manufacturing PMI is based on a survey of about 1,200 companies in 27 industries, while HSBC tracks smaller private sector firms, including 400 small- and medium-sized companies. HSBC's final index is due on Nov. 1.

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