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Chinese Industrial Profits Decline for Seventh Consecutive Month Amidst Economic Slowdown

China’s industrial sector is grappling with persistent challenges as profits of industrial firms in the country witnessed a 6.7 percent year-on-year drop in July, marking the seventh straight month of decline. This sustained downturn can be attributed to a combination of factors, including a slowdown in demand and an overall sluggish economy.

The figures, compiled by the National Bureau of Statistics (NBS), provide a stark picture of the challenges faced by Chinese industrial firms. The survey encompasses a range of industrial enterprises with minimum annual revenues of 20 million yuan (approximately US$2.78 million) from their core operations.

Over the initial seven months of 2023, profits at Chinese industrial firms registered a significant 15.5 percent decline, amounting to 3.94 trillion yuan. This follows a substantial 16.8 percent plunge in profits during the first half of the year.

The continuous decline in industrial profits reflects the prevailing weakness in China’s industrial activity. The manufacturing purchasing managers’ index (PMI) for July, as reported by the NBS, marked its fourth consecutive month of contraction. This contraction in the manufacturing sector is indicative of China’s ongoing economic challenges. Despite being the world’s second-largest economy, China faces stagnation amidst the backdrop of weakening global demand.

The release of these disappointing economic figures has prompted calls for the Chinese government to expedite stimulus measures to reinvigorate economic growth. Chinese Premier Li Qiang, however, has expressed confidence in China’s ability to achieve its targeted economic growth rate of 5 percent for the year.

As China navigates these complex economic waters, global markets and analysts remain watchful for any signs of a turnaround. The fate of the Chinese industrial sector carries implications not only for the country itself but also for the broader global economic landscape. Investors and policymakers alike are closely monitoring developments, hoping for a revival in industrial fortunes that can help steer China toward a path of sustained growth.

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