Chinese manufacturing output shrunk in May: HSBC survey

The HSBC Purchasing Managers’ Index for China has been released, suggesting that the country’s manufacturing sector shrunk in May.

The HSBC survey, carried out by research firm Markit, looks mainly at smaller companies, and gave a result of 49.2 for May, wheareas the official PMI – which gave a result of 50.8 – focuses on larger and midsize, government-owned firms.

Any result lower than 50 indicates contraction.

The result for the HSBC survey indicates the Chinese manufacturing sector put in its weakest performance since October last year, reports The Australian Financial Review.

The New York Times reports that the Chinese government predicts overall economic growth of 7.5 per cent for the year. This is strong compared to most developed nations, but is slower than experienced in 2011 (9.3 per cent) and 2010 (10.4).

“After years of double-digit expansion, China’s pace of growth has cooled in recent years — a slowdown that has in part been engineered by the authorities in Beijing as they try to ease a potentially worrisome flood of lending, forestall asset price bubbles and direct the economy toward higher-quality expansion,” reported the Times.