Slowing Chinese growth may prompt rate cut

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The Independent Online

Speculation that Beijing will look to ward off a slowdown for the world's second biggest economy with further interest rate cuts gathered pace yesterday after HSBC's August survey of manufacturing activity slipped to 47.6 – a 10th month of decline.

Another official Chinese survey also saw manufacturing activity falling to 49.2 – the first time since November 2011 that the official PMI had fallen below 50, which separates expansion from contraction.

"Beijing must step up policy easing to stabilise growth and foster job market conditions," said Qu Hongbin, chief China economist at HSBC. "This [survey], combined with a record high in stocks of finished goods sub-index, and a 41-month low employment index, suggests China's exporters are facing increasing difficulties amid stronger global headwinds."