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China manufacturing growth slowing: survey

dpa logodpa 1/04/2017

China's purchasing managers' index by the Caixin Insight Group came in at 51.2 in March, down from 51.7 in February and a 17-month high of 53.4 in December.

A private survey of Chinese factory activity has found slowing growth, contrasting with official reports of the fastest expansion in almost five years.

The country's purchasing managers' index by the Caixin Insight Group came in on Saturday at 51.2 in March, down from 51.7 in February and a 17-month high of 53.4 in December.

Rates of growth in output, total new orders, input and output prices all slid from the previous month.

New export sales increased at the weakest pace in three months, falling to 51.9 from 53.8 in February, according to Saturday's report.

"Overall, the Chinese manufacturing economy continued to improve, but signs of a weakening have started to emerge ahead of the second quarter," said Zhong Zhengsheng, director of macroeconomic analysis at CEBM Group.

"Downward pressure may further increase."

The Caixin survey focuses more heavily on smaller, export-oriented firms whereas the official index reportedly targets larger state-run companies.

Friday's official index by the Chinese Federation of Logistics and Purchasing reported 51.8 growth in March, the highest since April 2012's 53.3.

Improved orders from home and abroad contributed to rising and dynamic growth in the world's second-largest economy, according to the official manufacturing index.

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