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Chinas latest trade data is much worse than anyone expected

Chinas latest trade data is much worse than anyone expectedChinas trade data released today (Feb. 15) shows the countrys economic slowdown may be even steeper than feared.

In January, exports from China dropped by 11.2%, the worst fall since March last year. Its imports fell by a massive 18.8%, the 15th month in a row of declines.

Both drops were far worse than expectedanalysts estimated exports would fall by less than 2% and imports by less than 1%, a Reuters survey shows.

Weak import data can sometimes be explained in part by a cheaper currency. Chinas yuan fell by 1.3% against the dollar in January, after losing 2.2% of its value in the final quarter of 2015. But that isnt the case hereeven in yuan terms, exports dropped significantly, by 6.6% in January. Imports also fell 14.4% in local currency terms.

The disappointing trade figures sparked some investors to raise more questions about the future of the yuan.
Chinas latest trade data is much worse than anyone expected

But the Peoples Bank of China appears to be doing the opposite. It strengthened the currency on Monday, by the most in over three months, in an apparent attempt to allay devaluation fears.

Source: Quartz
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