China’s June producer prices and consumer price index

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Consumer goods prices gained 0.9 percent year on year in June, flat with the growth in May. NBS official Dong Yaxiu attributed (link in Chinese) the sharp rise chiefly to a low comparison base a year earlier and heavy rains in southern China, which hit the fruit harvest and interfered with transporting the harvest.

Companies in the sectors of medical equipment and semiconductor were among the biggest gainers, with Andon Health Co., Ltd. seeing its share price rise by the daily 10-percent limit to 5.69 yuan a share.

The headline CPI figure was unchanged from May, as higher food price inflation (which was up to 8.3 percent year on year in June from 7.7 percent in May) offset lower non-food price inflation (which dipped to 1.4 percent from 1.6 percent).

In June, the index was flat with the same period a year ago, according to the NBS. "Falling producer prices in China also have the potential to spark global deflation fears".

Although Beijing and Washington reached another truce in their trade war last month, economists expect continuing pressure on the Chinese economy as manufacturers shift more production overseas to avoid United States tariffs on China-made goods.

Premier Li Keqiang pledged earlier this month to implement financing tools, including cuts to the amount of reserves commercial banks need to maintain with the central People's Bank of China (PBOC), to support small and private firms, adding to expectations for further stimulus measures.

At the same time, however, he and other top policymakers have reiterated that China will not resort to large-scale stimulus.

Chinese stocks ended lower on Tuesday, tracking overnight weakness on the Wall Street, after strong USA jobs data dimmed hopes of an aggressive rate cut by the Federal Reserve.

The consumer price index (CPI) in June rose 2.7% in annual terms, driven by higher food prices.

Among upstream sectors, PPI inflation in the mining sector slowed to 4.5 percent year on year in June from 6.1 percent in May, while PPI in the raw materials sector fell further to drop 2.1 percent in June from the 0.6 percent fall in May and the processing sector was flat last month, cooling from the 0.5 percent increase in May.

Core inflation that strips out volatile food and energy prices was at 1.6% in June from a year earlier, the same annual pace as in May.

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