China retail sales growth slows

November 12th, 2008 - 3:39 pm ICT by IANS  

Beijing, Nov 12 (Xinhua) China’s retail sales grew at a slower annual rate of 22 percent in October due to weak consumption sentiment amid a slowing economy. Sales reached one trillion yuan ($148 billion) last month, the National Bureau of Statistics (NBS) said Wednesday. The pace was down from 23.2 percent in both September and August and 23.3 percent in July.

Retail sales till October rose 22 percent annually to 8.8 trillion yuan, according to the NBS.

Many consumers cut on spending in a slowing economy, grim corporate outlook, and plunge in the stock market, the report said.

The economy expanded nine percent annually in the third quarter, down from 10.1 percent in the second quarter and 10.6 percent in the first quarter.

The benchmark Shanghai Composite Index has fallen 70 percent from its peak in mid-October last year. It slid 15.05 points, or 0.82 percent, to 1,828.56 before the noon break as the dismal sales number added fresh concerns over an economic slowdown.

Economic data released Tuesday showed October export growth slowed further to 19.2 percent from 21.5 percent in September.

“In the long term, economic growth should rely more on consumption, rather than on exports,” said Zhang Yansheng, director of International Economic Research Institute under the National Development and Reform Commission.

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