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China's inflation rises to 2.4% in April

Xinhua | Updated: 2013-05-09 09:59

"But given the subdued momentum in the economic recovery, the CPI will not see rapid gains this year," he added.

The country's economic growth unexpectedly dipped to 7.7 percent in the first quarter, falling short of market expectations and suggesting a continued tepid economic rebound for the world's second-largest economy.

While analysts largely believe inflationary pressures are not a cause for concern in the short term, Thursday's data regarding prices at factory gates demanded more market attention.

China's producer price index (PPI), which measures wholesale inflation, fell 2.6 percent year on year in April, marking the 14th straight month of decline and the steepest drop in six months that pointed to continued weak market demand.

Official data earlier this month showed China's Purchasing Managers' Index for the manufacturing sector fell to 50.6 percent in April from 50.9 percent in March. The sub-index for new orders edged down 0.6 percentage points from the previous month to 51.7 percent.

Given the weak growth activity and relatively subdued inflation, China may bend towards looser monetary policies to keep liquidity flowing to nurture the recovery, while proceeding with structural reforms to sustain long-term growth, Liu said.

The possibility of an interest rate cut within the year is on the rise, he projected.

But Lian Ping, an economist with the Bank of Communications, held that such a radical move is unlikely, as the current liquidity is ample enough to support growth and further significant easings may once again fan up property prices.

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