Reposted from: China Business Network
Our reporter Tan Zhijuan reports from Beijing
In April, the economic operation continued to recover, and the year-on-year growth rate of industrial added value and consumption both accelerated compared with the previous month. The latest data released by the National Bureau of Statistics show that in April, the industrial added value increased by 5.6% year-on-year, 1.7 percentage points faster than the previous month; the total retail sales of social consumer goods increased by 18.4% year-on-year, 7.8 percentage points faster than the previous month; from January to April , the national investment in fixed assets increased by 4.7% year-on-year, a drop of 0.4 percentage points from January to March.
In this regard, Wang Qing, the chief macro analyst of Dongfang Jincheng, told the reporter of “China Business Daily”: “On the whole, under the influence of the current economic recovery momentum and the low base effect brought about by the peak of the epidemic in the same period last year, residents’ consumption in April The year-on-year growth rate of macro data such as industrial production and industrial production has rebounded significantly. It is expected that the economy will maintain a recovery momentum in the second quarter; The strength of the economic restoration depends on the situation.”
Fu Linghui, spokesperson of the National Bureau of Statistics, also said in response to reporters’ questions: “Since this year, the overall economic operation has continued to recover. Judging from the situation in April, the growth rate of the main indicators of economic operation has accelerated, and some economies have recovered by themselves.” Factors for improvement include the continued emergence of policy effects and the impact of a low base in the same period last year. Overall, the economy continues to recover and recover.”
Favorable factors supporting consumption are gradually increasing
According to the National Bureau of Statistics, in April, the total retail sales of consumer goods increased by 18.4% year-on-year, 7.8 percentage points faster than the previous month. Previously, the total retail sales of social consumer goods in March increased by 10.6% year-on-year, 7.1 percentage points faster than that in January and February, and also higher than market expectations.
Wang Qing believes: “In April, the year-on-year increase in social zero was mainly due to the low base under the impact of the epidemic in the same period last year. Excluding the observation of the impact of the low base, the current consumption recovery momentum is still relatively moderate.”
The reporter noticed that this month’s consumption has also highlighted some bright spots: First, contact consumption such as catering has grown rapidly. Offline consumption scenarios such as catering and movie theaters continue to expand, and related consumption demand is released rapidly.
According to official data, in April, the national catering revenue increased by 43.8% year-on-year, and the growth rate was 17.5 percentage points faster than that in March; the movie box office revenue was 2.87 billion yuan, a year-on-year increase of about 4 times, and the growth rate was significantly faster than that in March. In Wang Qing’s view, the stronger rebound in catering is due to the fact that the impact of the epidemic on catering was greater than that of commodity sales in the same period last year.
Second, the consumption of travel-related services has rebounded sharply. In April, the national urban rail transit passenger volume increased by 95.8% year-on-year. According to estimates, during the Qingming Festival this year, the number of domestic tourists will increase by 22.7% compared with the day of the Qingming Festival in 2022; during the “May 1st” holiday, residents’ willingness to travel has increased significantly, driving the rapid recovery of tourism-related consumption, and domestic tourism revenue has increased by 128.9% year-on-year.
In addition, from the perspective of major commodity categories, the year-on-year growth rate of retail sales of clothing, gold and silver jewelry, cosmetics, sports and entertainment products, communication equipment, automobiles and other optional consumer goods rebounded significantly in April. According to official data, in April, the retail sales of cosmetics, gold, silver and jewelry, sports and entertainment products, and communication equipment increased by 24.3%, 44.7%, 25.7%, and 14.6% year-on-year respectively, and the growth rate was 14.7%, 14.7%, and 14.6% faster than that in March, respectively. 7.3, 9.9 and 12.8 percentage points.
“This is because the sales of these categories of goods in the same period last year were greatly affected by the epidemic, while the year-on-year growth rate of retail sales of daily necessities that was less affected by the epidemic last year rebounded less.” Wang Qing explained.
Wang Qing said that under the background of low prices, there is more room for future policies to promote consumption, and the urgency is also stronger. Among them, while continuing to improve consumption conditions and expand consumption scenarios, various localities can also introduce phased targeted support measures for large-scale consumption areas such as new energy vehicles, smart home appliances, and green building materials. consumption vouchers and consumption subsidies. This can make up for the income gap of residents caused by the three-year epidemic to a certain extent, enhance residents’ consumption capacity, and promote the optimization and upgrading of consumption.
Fu Linghui pointed out that judging from the recent situation, favorable factors supporting consumption are gradually increasing. Since the beginning of this year, the overall employment situation has improved, which is conducive to increasing the income of urban and rural residents and enhancing their consumption capacity. The consumption scene is recovering in an orderly manner, and some consumer demand that was suppressed by the impact of the epidemic in the early stage is rapidly released, which will provide strong support for the recovery of consumption. At the same time, with the gradual improvement of the economic environment, residents’ propensity to consume is also increasing. Judging from the situation in the first quarter, the average propensity to consume of residents has rebounded slightly compared with the fourth quarter of last year. Various regions and departments have introduced a series of consumption-promoting policies this year to stabilize large-scale consumption such as automobiles, accelerate the cultivation of new types of consumption, and promote cultural and tourism consumption. As the effects of these policies gradually emerge, they will further promote the continuous expansion of consumption.
Fu Jiaqi, a statistician of the Department of Trade and Economics of the National Bureau of Statistics, said that in the next stage, with the effective implementation of relevant consumption promotion policies, residents’ willingness to consume will gradually increase, the consumption environment will continue to improve, and consumption scenarios will continue to innovate and expand. The consumer market is expected to continue to recover and improve. situation.
The economy is expected to continue its weak recovery in the future
The reporter noticed that although the year-on-year growth rate of industry, consumption and other indicators accelerated in April, the month-on-month growth rate all fell back, which aroused market attention.
According to official data, in April, the value added of industry fell by 0.47% month-on-month, the first time in history that there was a month-on-month decline in the same period. At the same time, consumption also slowed down month-on-month, with a month-to-month increase of 0.49% in April, lower than 1.64% in February and 0.78% in March.
In the opinion of industry experts, due to the base effect, the year-on-year growth rate of indicators including industry and consumption has rebounded sharply, but the month-on-month growth rate has mostly declined, which shows that the foundation for economic recovery is not yet solid, and the endogenous driving force is still insufficient.
Guotai Junan Securities believes that the main reason for the decline in economic data in April is that after the release of the backlog of demand dividends after the epidemic, the endogenous power of the subsequent economic recovery needs to be improved, and it is expected that the policy of stabilizing growth will continue to exert force to promote economic recovery after the third quarter.
The Politburo meeting on April 28 pointed out: “The current improvement in my country’s economic operation is mainly restorative, the endogenous driving force is not strong, the demand is still insufficient, economic transformation and upgrading are facing new resistance, and there are still many difficulties to be overcome in promoting high-quality development. challenge.”
The official website of the National Bureau of Statistics wrote that, in general, in April, the national economy continued to recover, and positive factors accumulated and increased. But we must also see that the international environment is still complex and severe, domestic demand is still insufficient, and the endogenous driving force for economic recovery is not yet strong.
However, Huang Wentao, chief economist of China Securities, said in the research report that looking back, although the short-term economic situation may not be strong in April, including the future, it is still significantly better than last year. It is expected that after the short-term weakening of the economy in April, the endogenous momentum will gradually take over in the future, and the economy will continue to recover weakly.
Fu Linghui pointed out: “In the next stage, the stable recovery of economic operation will be supported by many favorable factors. The employment situation will improve, and the recovery of consumption and service industries will become an important supporting force for the economic improvement in the second quarter.”
In terms of policy, Guosheng Securities believes that the economic data in April further point to the weak endogenous driving force. Looking back, the economic recovery momentum is slowing down, and we can look forward to more policies in the future, such as further relaxation of real estate, RRR cuts and interest rate cuts, and the promotion of major infrastructure projects.
Wang Tao, Chief China Economist of UBS, predicts that the tone of the macro policy may remain active and supportive, and that the announced policies may introduce specific and detailed measures one after another. However, given the low base that boosted year-on-year growth in the second quarter, large-scale stimulus policies are unlikely in the near future. It is also expected that the RRR may be cut again within the year, but the policy interest rate will not be lowered, and the LPR may be slightly lowered by 10 basis points during the year.
The official website of the National Bureau of Statistics wrote that in the next stage, we will speed up the construction of a new development pattern, comprehensively deepen reform and opening up, combine the effectiveness of policies with stimulating the vitality of business entities, actively restore and expand demand, accelerate the construction of a modern industrial system, and promote the realization of qualitative economic growth. Effective improvement and reasonable growth in volume, and efforts to promote high-quality economic development.