Dienstag, 5. Mai 2009

China's Economy: More Crystal-Ball Reading

Yesterday, stock markets rallied because China's Purchasing Manager Index had improved sharply. Industrial production is supposed to be up strongly in April, and more and more forecasters are projecting solid Q2 yoy growth of 7 % or more.

But apparently, China's April electricity output was down 4 % yoy, quite a bit worse than in March.

An official from the Electricity Regulatory Commission seems to think this is a good sign: "Although the rate of decline in April may be faster than that in March, the big drop in power generation overall has been halted." Anybody get his logic? I don't.

But more often than not, it's anyway rather useless to read official statements. This announcement was published by Statistics China regarding Q1 electricity use. It contains highly illuminating statements such as this one:

Energy consumption of basic industries and key energy-consuming industrial enterprises was booming up:

Comparing the fourth quarter of last year, the decreasing or increasing rate of energy consumption of power and raw materials and other basic industries was narrowed or enlarged. Of which, electrical power industry descended 8.91 %; iron and steel industry was declining 5.66 %; chemical raw materials industry dropped 10.59 %; building materials industry increased 3.32 %, booming up increasing rate by 2.42 percentage points.

In the first quarter, the annual energy consumption of key industrial enterprises in the whole country stood at 10,000 tons of standard coal or more decreased 5.0 % over the same period of previous year, narrowed 6.95 percentage points over previous quarter. Key industrial enterprises in energy consumption since November 2008 were constantly picking up (rose 2.34 percentage points monthly).

Got it? I didn't. How these two paragraphs can describe any "booming up" is beyond me (not that "booming up" exists as an English expression, as far as I am aware).

(Previous post on same topic.)


  1. Don't make fun of poor Chinese bureaucrats! At least their spelling is correct!

  2. Anyway: China will rule the world, get used to it.