China‘s manufacturing sector showed fresh signs of bottoming out in April, with export orders ticking up, but activity still contracted for a sixth consecutive month, according to a private sector survey on Wednesday.
“The seasonal rebound this year was much weaker than that in the past, suggesting growth momentum remains soft,” Barclay’s Capital analyst Yiping Huang said in a note to clients.
The HSBC China Purchasing Managers’ Index, geared to smaller firms, improved to 49.3 in April from 48.3 in March, but remained below the threshold of 50 that divides expansion from contraction. It was slightly better than a preliminary estimate of 49.1 in late April.
The weaker reading from the HSBC index contrasted with strong official PMI numbers released on Tuesday, highlighting the continued divergence between China’s larger, predominantly state-owned enterprises and smaller, private firms which are struggling to get credit.
Still, it showed that the rate…
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