China CPI Inflation A Bit Faster Than Forecast

on February 13 2014 9:36 PM
China Jan CPI
A customer picks up a shoe at a shop where posters advertising price discounts are hung, outside a department store in Beijing, Oct. 23, 2013. Reuters/Kim Kyung-Hoon

China's consumer inflation rate held steady in January, coming in slightly higher than forecasts.

The consumer price index (CPI) for January jumped 2.5 percent from a year earlier, or 1 percent on a monthly basis, as beef, pork and vegetable prices all increased, official data showed Friday.

The year-on-year result was identical to that in December, but the month-on-month gain was higher than a 0.3 percent climb in the previous month. The result also surpassed a 2.3 percent climb forecasted in Wall Street Journal and Reuters surveys.

The producer price index (PPI) retreated 1.6 percent in January from a year earlier -- which was the biggest decrease since August 2013. A decline of 1.7 percent had been expected.

That compared to a 1.4 percent fall in December, when prices were flat on a monthly basis. The result matched a forecast from a Wall Street Journal economists' poll.

Stocks opened higher as the data were released, with Hong Kong's Hang Seng Index HK:HSI +0.70 percent up 1.1 percent compared to a 1 percent premarket gain ahead of the numbers, according to MarketWatch. The Shanghai Composite CN:SHCOMP +0.03 percent swung to a 0.4 percent gain from a 0.1 percent loss in the premarket.

The Australian dollar AUDUSD +0.26 percent rose for a brief time right after the data but rapidly returned to its previous level around 90.10 U.S. cents, MarketWatch noted.

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