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China+ Publications

Below is a list of our China+ Publications for the last 6 months. If you are looking for reports older than 6 months please email info@pantheonmacro.com, or contact your account rep

Please use the filters on the right to search for a specific date or topic.

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16 May 2022 A Change of Tune from the PBoC Amidst a Slump in Lending

The PBoC has adopted new language in the wake of a slowdown in bank lending...

...But we think this is unlikely to signal a sudden pivot in monetary policy, given other constraints.

The PBoC has no choice but to accept a higher debt ratio, unless it wants to deepen the recession.

Craig BothamChina+

10 May Trade Disruption Builds for China, as Restrictions Tighten

Zero-Covid caught up with Chinese exports in April, as inventories were exhausted...

...But demand played a role too, with higher energy prices dragging down trade with Japan and Europe.

The fundamental backdrop for the renminbi is deteriorating, highlighted by plunging FX reserves.

Craig BothamChina+

21 Apr 2022 China Drags on Exports, Adding to Japan's Problems as the Yen Drops

Lockdowns and shuttered factories in China appear to be the culprit behind slowing Japanese exports.

Further weakness seems inevitable as Chinese policy tightens, and regional supply chains collapse.

Underperforming exports again raise questions about the benefits of a weaker yen.

Craig BothamChina+

12 Apr 2022 Plenty of Scope, and Need, for Further Easing in China

China's inflation outlook remains very different to most major economies, despite the energy shock.

The PBoC is able to ease further, with inflation far from its target, but is proving reluctant.

Private sector demand for credit still looks soft, and the PBoC’s power is limited, absent fiscal action.

Craig BothamChina+

4 Apr 2022 Whether China Sneezes, or Locks Down, Asia Catches a Cold

  • China's lockdowns and other restrictions weighed on regional activity in March, particularly exports.
  • Factory closures in China have tightened some bottlenecks, but others may have loosened.
  • The war in Ukraine has added to cost pressures, and worse is to come on both fronts.

Craig BothamChina+

1 Apr 2022 A Sharp Slowdown for China in March, but No New Stimulus, Yet

  • China's economy is groaning under the strain of increasingly restrictive zero-Covid policies.
  • Factory closures and lockdowns took a heavy toll on both manufacturing and services in March.
  • Policymakers are relying on the existing toolkit, deployed more rapidly, for now.

Craig BothamChina+

14 Mar 2022 Chinese Stimulus Underwhelms as Risk Appetite Remains Muted

  • Monetary easing is yet to result in more credit reaching the private sector, as lending slows.
  • The state sector is still the driving force behind credit expansion, amidst elevated risk aversion.
  • We expect the policy response to strengthen now the NPC is over, but remember, stability is the goal.

Craig BothamChina+

8 Mar 2022 China's 2022 Work Report, Road Map or Wish-List

  • Slower export growth provides a taster of the challenges facing China's economy in 2022.
  • The Work Report—a government scorecard and road map—suggests a reliance on infrastructure...
  • ...but convincing local governments and banks to do their part is going to be difficult, and risky.

Craig BothamChina+

24 Feb 2022 Ukraine, Energy Prices a Bigger Worry than Awkwardness for China

  • Russia's invasion of Ukraine puts China in a tricky position diplomatically, but it won't mind too much...
  • ...What matters more to China is the impact on energy prices, at a time of softening growth.
  • Announcements signal more support from the centre, but bang-for-buck will be lower than usual.

Craig BothamChina+

21 Feb 2022 A Brief Lull, but Japanese Inflation will Soon Jump, Relatively Speaking

  • A slowdown in Japanese inflation in January will be followed by a surge in March...
  • ...but the BoJ wants to see more sustainable price growth, and that means wage increases.
  • We see little that would indicate a change in the base rate this year; policy should remain easy.

Craig BothamChina+

14 Feb 2022 It's Clich├ęd, But Sometimes a Crisis Really is an Opportunity

  • China saw another huge current account surplus in Q4, but it is under increasing pressure.
  • The support provided to China's external balance by the pandemic will fade further in 2022.
  • The renminbi should weaken on a sustained basis in H2, though pressure could show as soon as Q2.

Craig BothamChina+

11 Feb 2022 The State Sector Doubles Down as Risk Appetite Dwindles

  • Record weakness in Chinese M1 growth is only partly attributable to seasonal and base effects...
  • ...Weaker risk appetite, and softer economic activity, underlie the drop in liquid deposits.
  • Credit growth continued to become more heavily dominated by the state in January.

Craig BothamChina+

1 Feb 2022 A Trifecta of Disruptions Hits Chinese Activity in January

  • Chinese factory closures—thanks to Covid, holi- days, and pollution—led to soft manufacturing data.
  • Covid alone is the prime suspect for weakness in services activity, and is not yet under control.
  • Policy is yet to turn growth around, but we expect the floor to emerge by March.

Craig BothamChina+

27 Jan 2022 Chinese Property Sector Update, Keep a Cool Head on Easing

  • China's property sector plummeted over the course of 2021, and nosedives are hard to escape.
  • Policy easing looks modest compared to previous cycles, in line with government messaging.
  • The impact of easing on growth will also be weaker than markets expect, based on past cycles.

Craig BothamChina+

18 Jan 2022 A Better Year for Consumption, but Now Normal Service Resumes

  • Growth was stronger than expected at the end of 2021, but still slowed...
  • The outsized contribution from both consumption and exports will now fade...
  • ...as the central government takes centre stage, supported from the wings by the PBoC.

Craig BothamChina+

14 Jan 2022 Credit Growth is Grease to the Wheels, not Fuel for the Fire

  • China's money and credit growth improved in December, but this isn't a stimulus surge.
  • The authorities are laying down the groundwork to bail out swathes of the economy.
  • We expect the Q4 GDP reading to be the weakest since the start of the pandemic.

Craig BothamChina+

4 Jan 2022 Bright in Patches, but a Largely Dismal End to China's 2021

  • Despite some apparent good news, early data point to marginal weakening in growth in December.
  • Policymakers are delivering more initiatives, but they will only cushion the fall.
  • Bad news on Sinovac efficacy versus Omicron means reopening is pushed back a year, at least.

Craig BothamChina+

16 Dec 2021 Infrastructure is Still En Route, but Other Headwinds are Forming

November's data are a mixed bag, but investment weakness, led by property, is the main concern.

Infrastructure should begin to offset property soon, but manufacturing faces its own challenges.

Omicron has entered China, and will intensify the cycle of zero-Covid lockdowns.

Craig BothamChina+

13 Dec 2021 Slow and Steady in November as Policymakers Double Down

  • Early Chinese data point to a stabilisation—at low levels— of economic activity.
  • Infrastructure investment likely rose in November, partially offsetting the property slowdown.
  • Prepare for a harsher crackdown on the private sec- tor in 2022, and more infrastructure spending.

Craig BothamChina+

1 Dec 2021 Stability and the Easing of Stagflation Risk in China

  • Chinese economic momentum stabilised in November, thanks to policy action.
  • The end of the energy crisis has boosted output, and eased some bottlenecks.
  • Infrastructure support looks to be arriving, propping up construction as property struggles.

Craig BothamChina+

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