China's industrial output rose 14.7% year-on-year in October to US$96 billion, its slowest pace in almost two years, the National Statistics Bureau announced Wednesday. It came after a 16.1% increase in production in September, Bloomberg reported. Total output for the first 10 months of the year was up 16.9% on 2005. Economists saw the slowdown as evidence that government moves to restrict wasteful investment is having some effect. However, the drop was also linked to weakening exports in anticipation of a drop in demand from the US should its economy begin to slide. The purchasing managers' index, a gauge of manufacturing activity in China, fell for the first time in three months while textile output rose 12% in October, trailing the 14.8% growth recorded for the first nine months. Electrical machinery output was up just 12.6% following a rise of 16.1% from January through September.
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