March 31, 2016: China’s economy showed strong signs of improvement in March, helped by a resurgence in the real estate sector, according to the newly-launched China Business Activity Index (BAI), a new service from FT Confidential Research (FTCR).

The BAI, one of the earliest and most comprehensive monthly indicators of economic activity and sentiment in China, is a monthly snapshot of changes in business activity as reported by 700 companies across the Chinese export, logistics and real estate sectors.

Amid recent reports of China’s slowing economy, March’s reading of the BAI shows a sharp recovery as real estate activity surged. However, export and logistics companies were far less positive, with both groups saying that the usual post-Chinese New Year rebound in orders failed to materialise.

“This latest reading of the BAI gives some grounds for optimism”, says Rafael Halpin, head of research at FT Confidential Research. “But the Chinese economy is firing on just one engine — real estate — while our data shows other sectors still remain weak.”

The BAI, a diffusion index based on data stretching back to 2013, is released on the last working day of each month at 0145 GMT/0945 Hong Kong time. It covers the key issues facing companies in the world’s most important emerging market, including order volumes, profits, and the outlook for business.

The BAI is just one of a full range of proprietary data products that FTCR compiles every month based on its surveys of thousands of companies and consumers across emerging markets.

For further details of March’s survey result please see the full report, here.

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For more information about the BAI please go to ftconfidentialresearch.com, or contact:

Rafael Halpin | rafael.halpin@ft.com | +44 2078734357

For media enquiries please contact:

Rachel Taube | rachel.taube@ft.com | +1 917-551-5092

 

About FT Confidential Research

FT Confidential Research is an independent research service from the Financial Times providing in-depth analysis and statistical insight into key emerging markets. We combine findings from our proprietary, on-the-ground research with insight from our extensive network of corporate and local contacts and analysis from our team of experts to provide objective, predictive research on key macroeconomic and industry-specific trends for investors and companies.

The BAI is one of a full range of proprietary data products that FTCR compiles each month based on its surveys of thousands of companies and consumers across emerging markets. Our China sector-specific indices cover real estate, freight, exports, recruitment, consumers and underground lending.

 

About the Financial Times

The Financial Times, one of the world’s leading business news organisations, is recognised internationally for its authority, integrity and accuracy. Providing essential news, comment, data and analysis for the global business community, the FT has a combined paid print and digital circulation of 780,000. Mobile is an increasingly important channel for the FT, driving almost half of total traffic.

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