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China's Growth Slumps Amid Trade War With US

It's now at its lowest level in at least 26 years
By Newser Editors and Wire Services
Posted Jul 15, 2019 12:03 AM CDT
Containers are piled up at a port in Qingdao in east China's Shandong province.   (Chinatopix via AP)
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(Newser) – Chin a's economic growth sank to its lowest level in at least 26 years in the quarter ending in June, adding to pressure on Chinese leaders as they fight a tariff war with Washington . The world's second-largest economy grew 6.2% over a year ago, down from the previous quarter's 6.4%, government data showed Monday. Forecasters had expected China's economy to rebound in late 2018 but pushed back that target after President Trump hiked US tariffs on Chinese imports to pressure Beijing over its efforts to develop advanced technologies, the AP reports. Now, economists say the slowdown might extend into next year. Quarterly growth was the lowest since China began reporting such data in 1993, according to an employee of the press office of the National Bureau of Statistics, Dong Hui.

Trump and China's President Xi Jinping agreed last month to resume negotiations on the fight that has battered exporters on both sides. But economists warn their truce is fragile because they still face the same array of disputes that caused talks to break down in May. "The trade war is having a huge impact on the Chinese economy," says Edward Moya of OANDA. "As trade negotiations struggle for meaningful progress, we are probably not near the bottom for China's economy." Chinese leaders have stepped up spending and bank lending to keep growth within this year's official target range of 6% to 6.5% and avert politically dangerous job losses. But they face an avalanche of unexpectedly bad news including plunging auto sales. In the second half of the year, "the external environment may still be more complicated," said a government rep, Mao Shengyong.

(Read more China stories.)

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