China’s economic growth slowed to 6.9% in 2016, The Wall Street Journal reported, citing figures from the National Bureau of Statistics. The figure marked the weakest annual pace in 25 years, with 6.8% growth in the fourth quarter also undershooting market expectations. The annual growth rate was down by 0.5 percentage points from the same figure reported in 2014, but observers have raised doubts about the headline figure, particularly given China’s electricity generation was down 0.2 percentage points for the period–the first such fall since 1968. “China’s reported growth rate for 2015 raises many questions rather than providing full reassurance about the economy’s true growth momentum,” said Eswar Prasad, former head of the International Monetary Fund’s China division.
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