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China Beige Book Exposes Government Lies: "Conventional Wisdom Of Economic Expansion In China Seriously Flawed"

Tyler Durden's picture




 

There are facts; then there are completely fabricated, made up numbers. And then there is Chinese "data." After having been exposed in the past several years countless times on these pages alone as being absolute manipulated propaganda hogwash, it is amazing that anyone, anywhere still believes anything to come out of the official Beijing mouthpiece, which merely adjusts a few variable cells in the big central planning goalseeking excel spreadsheet and reports the answer. Yet the recent myth of a China "rebound" is one of the factors why stocks recently hit fresh all time highs: forget all that stuff about a CNY1 trillion deleveraging (yes, China's credit bubble is still the biggest in the world) - all that matters is made up garbage. Well, it may be more difficult this time. As Bloomberg reports, a "Beige Book" survey of the Chinese economy conducted in late August showed that "China’s economy slowed this quarter as growth in manufacturing and transportation weakened in contrast with official signs of an expansion pickup, a private survey showed." Surprise: China was lying again.

For all those who had a deep-seated feeling all the data "confirming" a rebound in China since its near-death experience in June when the 25% shibor jump nearly destroyed its banking system, you were right: "The quarterly report, modeled on the U.S. Federal Reserve’s Beige Book business survey, diverges from government figures showing faster July and August gains in factory production that have spurred analysts from Citigroup Inc. to Deutsche Bank AG to upgrade expansion estimates. Nomura Holdings Inc. is among banks skeptical that any rebound will be sustained next year."

The report found that increases in business-investment and real estate revenue also slowed, while service industries picked up and employees became tougher to find, the survey from New York-based China Beige Book International said yesterday. The report is based on responses from 2,000 people from Aug. 12 to Sept. 4 as well as 32 in-depth interviews conducted later in September.

The punchline: results "show the conventional wisdom of a renewed, strong economic expansion in China to be seriously flawed," China Beige Book President Leland Miller and Craig Charney, research and polling director, said in a statement. The data "reveal weakening gains in profits, revenues, wages, employment and prices, all showing slipping growth on-quarter -- no disaster, but certainly not the powerful expansion suggested by the consensus narrative." 

Not only was there no rebound in the quarter but the economy was actually slowing down. From Bloomberg:

The report, like the Fed’s version, doesn’t give estimates of gross domestic product growth or other indicators beyond the survey results. The economy expanded 7.5 percent in the April-June period from a year earlier, slowing for a second quarter, according to China’s National Bureau of Statistics. The government has since introduced measures including faster railway spending and tax cuts to aid expansion.

 

The report, like the Fed’s version, doesn’t give estimates of gross domestic product growth or other indicators beyond the survey results. The economy expanded 7.5 percent in the April-June period from a year earlier, slowing for a second quarter, according to China’s National Bureau of Statistics. The government has since introduced measures including faster railway spending and tax cuts to aid expansion.

 

The latest survey said 47 percent of manufacturers reported revenue gains, down 6 percentage points from the second-quarter survey. Growth in export orders was “stable” for the U.S. and Europe and “off a bit” in Asia and developing nations outside of Asia.

 

In transportation, including shippers, 51 percent of respondents said revenue rose, down 18 percentage points. Fifty-three percent of a broader sample of businesses said investment rose, a 4-point decline. Service revenue rose for 57 percent of respondents, up 3 points.

All that said, we doubt anyone is surprised. After all it was none other than the current premier who admitted that all Chinese data is BS.

China’s statistics-bureau chief, Ma Jiantang, said earlier this month that the agency has “zero tolerance” for falsified data after it publicized cases of manipulated local numbers and the customs bureau cracked down on fraudulent export invoices. Li Keqiang, who became premier this year, said in 2007 that GDP figures were “man-made” and “for reference only,” according to a WikiLeaks cable.

So much for the great Chinese rebound, which as we explained two weeks ago is nothing but a reflection of the most recent surge in liquidity and leverage into the economy. Unsustainable surge, we should add, as the bubble just got even bigger.

 

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