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    Gavekal Dragonomics

    DragonWeek - Reform Advances, Growth Steadies

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    Gavekal Research

    5C China: Growth Is In The Air (Maybe)

    Growth is in the air! This is the refrain we are hearing increasingly from Chinese government spokesmen, and there are a number of indicators that give credence to the official sanguinity. Construction starts rebounded strongly in July. A stabilization in the producer price index and steel and iron ore prices suggests destocking is ending. With Europe out of recession and US data improving, exports should provide another tailwind.

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    Gavekal Dragonomics

    DragonWeek - Mixing Growth And Austerity

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    Gavekal Dragonomics

    Social Housing Makes A Comeback

    After a thoroughly disappointing first half, China’s government now looks increasingly worried about growth. Premier Li Keqiang, who started his tenure in office with much fine rhetoric about the need for structural reform, has recently been talking about the “bottom line” for growth (7%, in case you wondered) and the need to maintain confidence. While the administration says there is still no need for looser monetary or fiscal policy, it has...

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    Gavekal Dragonomics

    DragonWeek - The Cost Of The Credit Crunch

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    Gavekal Dragonomics

    Small Is Not So Beautiful

    There is a growing disconnect in China’s housing market. Sales have soared in big cities since the final quarter of 2012, but construction growth remains anemic. Developers for now remain reluctant to aggressively expand new construction, preferring instead to sell down their existing inventory. This behavior is consistent with our analysis that the housing market, after more than a decade of undersupply, swung into oversupply in 2012. Around...

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    Gavekal Dragonomics

    DragonWeek - From Oversupply To Undersupply

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    Gavekal Dragonomics

    China Economic Quarterly June 2013 - Southeast Asia

    Deng Xiaoping used to say that the foreign policy breakthrough he was most proud of was the full normalization of China’s relations with the countries in Southeast Asia. In the 1980s, Deng’s policies helped China transform itself from a deadly enemy of its southern neighbors to a potential partner. Over the next two decades, China nurtured relationships in its backyard. Yet over the past few years many of these efforts have gone to waste: from...

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    Gavekal Dragonomics

    CEQ Q2 2013 - Property

    Something strange is going on in China’s property market. Sales have soared in big citiessince the final quarter of 2012, but construction growth remains anemic (see “Economicsurvey” on p3). The weak numbers suggest that we can no longer rely on sales todrive construction starts, and also point to a structural shift towards slowingdemand. This leaves one central question: if demand remains healthy in China’s70 largest cities, as the official...

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    Gavekal Dragonomics

    DragonWeek - A Turn To The Supply Side

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    Gavekal Dragonomics

    Finding Investment's Future

    China’s investment growth is slowing, but that slowdown is not equally distributed. The huge investment surge of the past decade was primarily driven by a domestic housing boom, which in turn demanded big investment in industrial capacity to supply construction materials. But the volume of property construction will see at best very modest growth in coming years, as the growth in domestic housing supply is reaching a plateau (see Reaching The...

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    Gavekal Research

    Weaker For Longer

    China’s economic indicators for April confirmed that the weak recovery in Q1, and especially March, was not simply a blip. While growth in industrial value-added and other manufacturing indicators did tick up somewhat, the improvement was quite modest given the extremely low base set by the slowdown in April 2012. Credit continues to be very loose and housing sales are still doing very well, but these traditional leading indicators are taking...

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    Gavekal Dragonomics

    How Many More Times

    China’s growth has disappointed, again. GDP rose just 7.7% YoY in Q1, slowing from the 7.9% in Q4; in sequential terms, the slowdown was even worse, to an annualized 6.6% QoQ from 8.2%. The weak growth figure caught most observers, including ourselves, off guard, as a cyclical recovery—albeit a modest one—looked clearly underway as of the end of 2012. And with this unexpected soft patch in growth coming so soon after the last soft patch in 2Q12...

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    Gavekal Dragonomics

    DragonWeek - The Bumpy Road To Rebalancing

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    Gavekal Dragonomics

    DragonWeek - What Goes Around, Comes Around

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    Gavekal Dragonomics

    DragonWeek - Cutting Red Tape

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    Gavekal Research

    Crazy, But Not That Crazy

    Every so often we get worried calls from readers who have just seen a press report on “ghost cities” and wonder whether we have changed our minds and now agree that the Chinese property bubble is about to burst. The latest spate of calls followed a very scary piece by the US television program 60 Minutes featuring footage of miles upon miles of empty apartment blocks and shopping malls in Zhengzhou, Tianjin and Ordos.

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    Gavekal Dragonomics

    Walking The Tightrope

    Is China’s growth too weak or too strong? Commentary on the confusing economic data for the first two months of 2013 has been understandably divided. Deciphering the signals is not helped by the usual distortions in the data from the Chinese New Year holiday. On the minus side, the key indicator of industrial value-added slowed unexpectedly, and retail sales were disappointing, an apparent casualty of Xi Jinping’s anti-corruption campaign. On...

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    Gavekal Dragonomics

    China Economic Quarterly March 2013 - The Reform Agenda

    Next week, China’s National People’s Congress will formally anoint the country’s new leaders. President Xi Jinping and Premier Li Keqiang—who are expected to remain in power for the next decade—know that the years of easy, investment-driven growth are over. Under their leadership, China must find a healthier development model that puts greater reliance on household consumption, uses capital more efficiently, and provides more citizens with a...

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    Gavekal Dragonomics

    CEQ Q1 2013 - Land policy and development: How Asia Works

    Most people assume the world will continue to speed up. Yet the chances of seeing another developmental story like China’s are rather low. The era of transitions from poverty to wealth in only two generations, or 50 years, is probably over. The reason is that China—like Japan, South Korea and Taiwan before it, and Vietnam along with it—built its extraordinary developmental performance on land reform that enabled a transition to high-yield...

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