China’s producer prices fell at their fastest pace in over seven years in June, while consumer prices teetered on the edge of deflation, adding to the case for policymakers to use more stimulus to revive sluggish demand, reports Reuters. The consumer price index (CPI) was unchanged year-on-year, compared with the 0.2% gain seen in May, driven by a faster fall in pork prices. That dashed expectation for a 0.2% rise and was the slowest pace since February 2021.
The producer price index (PPI) fell for a ninth consecutive month in June, down 5.4% from a year earlier, the National Bureau of Statistics (NBS) said on Monday, the steepest decline since December 2015. That compared with a 4.6% drop in the previous month and a 5.0% fall tipped in a Reuters poll of analysts.
The worsening factory-gate price deflation and the move by consumer prices towards deflation for the first time since February 2021 bode ill for China’s economic growth. Momentum in China’s post-pandemic recovery has slowed from a brisk pickup seen in the first quarter with demand for industrial and consumer products weakening, raising concerns about the health of the world’s second-largest economy.