China’s economy showed signs of further momentum loss in November, with ongoing caution in consumer spending exacerbating pressures from the the floundering property sector, reports the Financial Times. Retail sales, a main gauge of consumption, rose only 3.9% year-on-year in November, well below economists’ forecasts of 4.7%. A small improvement in industrial activity, which grew 3.8%, was overshadowed by a drop in investment across the real estate industry.
New home prices lost 0.3%, their steepest fall since early 2015 and a third consecutive month of declines. Property investment rose 6% in China over the year to the end of November, compared with a 7.2 % rise by the end of October.
Weakness across China’s vast real estate sector, which accounts for more than a quarter of gross domestic product, is weighing heavily on the economy at a time when the government has reaffirmed its commitment to strict coronavirus prevention measures.