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Chinese shares kicked off Monday by surging close to their highest level in nearly a year as top economists polled by Agence France-Presse said they expected GDP to rise and the government reiterated its commitment to implementing reforms and curbing corruption.
The AFP poll of 15 economists forecast 7.7 per cent growth for 2012’s fourth quarter and 8 per cent for the beginning of 2013.
A similar poll conducted by Reuters forecast 7.8 per cent growth for 2012’s fourth quarter, while Bloomberg predicted 8.1 per cent for the same period.
The CSI300 of the top Shanghai and Shenzhen stock exchanges rose 3.2 per cent; the Shanghai Composite Index rose 3.1 per cent.
The positive numbers from China helped push a rally of other Asian exchanges.
In New York, the Bloomberg China-US Equity Index of the most-traded Chinese shares in the US rose 5.1 per cent during the first week of 2013, China Daily News reported Monday.
Manufacturing has also seen growth in recent weeks.
According to China’s official Purchasing Managers’ Index, the manufacturing industry grew for a third consecutive month in December 2012.
Realising that double-digit growth for China is unlikely this year, authorities are arguing for a series of reforms to boost consumer strength and improve the quality of life.
The Central Economic Work Conference, China’s most important economic policy meeting, held last December, determined that China would look inward this year and focus on increasing domestic demand, focusing on the capital market and real estate sectors.
“China will put job creation and people’s livelihood on top of the agenda. It will increase input into rural development, education, services, health, social security, job creation, environmental protection and technological innovation,” a China Central Television (CCTV) report said at the time.
Deutsche Bank China Economist Ma Jun told Dow Jones Newswire that he also expected “reforms in sectors such as resource pricing, interest rate liberalisation, capital account liberalisation, exchange rate reform and value-added tax reforms are most likely to be launched in the near term”.
With Inputs from Agencies