3.9% and 3.9%: China y/y and q/q GDP Growth

After several days’ worth of delay, NBS released Q3 GDP, 3.9% y/y and q/q (not annualized), vs. 3.4% and 3.5% Bloomberg consensus (thereby ending the suspense). This is the picture, using an index.

Figure 1: Index of Chinese real GDP, based on cumulated seasonally adjusted q/q growth rates (black), and Bloomberg consensus based on q/q growth rate (sky blue square), in logs 2019Q=0. Source: China NBS, Bloomberg, and author’s calculations.

Now, as noted in previous post, the seasonally adjusted q/q numbers reported by NBS is a little hard to replicate. In Figure 2, I show (normalized to 2019Q1=0) log index, and real GDP as reported (not seasonally adjusted), seasonally adjusted either using (multiplicative) moving average or Census X-13 (executed in EViews).

Figure 2: Index of Chinese real GDP, based on cumulated seasonally adjusted q/q growth rates (black), and Bloomberg consensus based on q/q growth rate (sky blue square), real GDP seasonally adjusted by author using multiplicative moving average (tan), and using X-13 with log transform (blue), and level implied by IMF WEO (red square), all in logs 2019Q=0. Source: China NBS, Bloomberg, IMF WEO (October 2022), and author’s calculations.

Since implied levels of GDP for 2021Q4 were the same regardless of index of cumulated growth rates (black) or X-13 adjusted GDP (blue), it’s apparent that a lot faster growth has to occur in Q4 using my adjusted series in order to hit the IMF forecast for 2022Q4.


44 thoughts on “3.9% and 3.9%: China y/y and q/q GDP Growth

  1. Macroduck

    September retail sales up 2.5% y/y, ending the quarter on a weak note, making rapid growth in Q4 less likely. China’s debt service is made more difficult by slow growth. That, in turn, makes growth more difficult – a vicious cycle. In terms of divergence from trend, China is a big drag on world growth. In all, an ugly picture. No wonder Xi didn’t want economic data to spoil his photo op.

    1. Moses Herzog

      The last thing Hu Jintao said to Xi as he was escorted out of the building “I stayed up all last night working on finishing these GDP calculations. And you’re screwing me out of the party cake?? REALLY?!?!?!?!?!!?”

    2. pgl

      Not that I trust China’s latest data point but how is this news a drag on world GDP growth when their reported growth is higher than that for the US or the EU? Of course you may be right about growth in 2022QIV.

      1. Moses Herzog

        Sheer volume of global trade, both in and out?? Imports rising at a much slower rate than exports are. Kind of like the reverse of when America starts catching fire (increased economic activity).

      2. Bruce Hall

        Still singing the praises of the CCP, eh? You really love the totalitarian fascists running the world’s largest concentration camp.

        1. pgl

          I am not singing anyone’s praises. Hey Brucie – I get it that you do not like being called out for the lying moron you are. But get over it weasel. Dishonest cheap shots such as this one does not make your dishonesty and stupidity any smarter.

    3. Macroduck

      Relative to trend, China has slowed a lot. Compare U.S. growth to maybe 1.8% (real), the EU to 1.6% (guessing) and China to 6%. China’s 2.3% for the past 2 quarters (0.4%+3.9% – not the real math, I know) is 3.7 ppt off trend. Make China’s trend 5.5% and it’s still a 3.2 ppt shortfall. Weight that with China’s GDP. Same exercise for the other big economies. China is a big drag. So is the U.S., less if you use GDI.

  2. ltr


    October 24, 2022

    China’s economy on more solid ground with steady Q3 growth

    BEIJING — China’s economy is on more solid ground in the third quarter of this year with major indicators showing positive signs of stabilization, backed by the country’s efforts to balance epidemic control and economic and social development.

    The country’s gross domestic product (GDP) grew 3.9 percent year on year to 30.76 trillion yuan (about 4.32 trillion U.S. dollars) in the third quarter, 3.5 percentage points higher than that in the second quarter, data from the National Bureau of Statistics (NBS) showed Monday.

    In the first three quarters, the country’s GDP increased 3 percent year on year, 0.5 percentage points faster than that in the first half of 2022, according to the NBS data.

    Many major economic indicators saw significant improvements compared with that in the second quarter, with production demand gradually recovering, and prices and employment remaining stable, the NBS said in a statement.

    A breakdown of Monday’s data showed that value-added industrial output by major industrial firms jumped 4.8 percent year on year in the third quarter, 4.1 percentage points faster than that in the second quarter.

    With economic activities generally perking up, China’s consumer market has warmed up in the third quarter. The country’s total retail sales of consumer goods ticked up 3.5 percent year on year in the third quarter, reversing the 4.6-percent decline logged in the second quarter.

    Fixed-asset investment sustained growth momentum in the third quarter, rising 5.7 percent from the same period a year earlier, up 1.5 percentage points from the second quarter.

    During the January-September period, investment in the manufacturing sector climbed 10.1 percent year on year while investment in high-tech manufacturing and services continued rapid expansion, rising 23.4 percent and 13.4 percent, respectively.

    “Generally speaking, the Chinese economy has managed to overcome negative impacts inflicted by unexpected factors, with major indicators staying within a reasonable range and positive factors accumulating,” the NBS said.

    This decent growth did not come easily with policymakers unveiling a slew of supportive policies to shore up the economy. China’s State Council unveiled an additional 19 follow-up policies in August on top of delivering a policy package for stabilizing the economy in May in order to shape greater synergy.

    Among these measures to facilitate economic stability are China’s ramped-up efforts to expand its tax and fee incentives and supportive policies to enterprises, offering a “timely rain” to companies in financial drought….

    1. ltr


      October 24, 2022

      China’s foreign trade of goods up 9.9 pct in Jan.-Sept.

      BEIJING — China’s foreign trade of goods jumped 9.9 percent year on year to 31.11 trillion yuan (about 4.75 trillion U.S. dollars) during the first nine months of 2022, official data showed Monday.

      Exports rose 13.8 percent year on year to 17.67 trillion yuan, while imports increased 5.2 percent from a year ago to 13.44 trillion yuan, according to the General Administration of Customs.

      From January to September, China’s trade with the Association of Southeast Asian Nations, the European Union, and the United States grew 15.2 percent, 9 percent and 8 percent, respectively.

      In this period, China’s trade with Belt and Road countries soared 20.7 percent year on year to 10.04 trillion yuan.

      Private enterprises saw imports and exports increase 14.5 percent from a year ago to 15.62 trillion yuan in the first nine months, accounting for 50.2 percent of the country’s total….

  3. ltr


    October 24, 2022

    China’s industrial output up 6.3 pct in September

    BEIJING — China’s value-added industrial output, an important economic indicator, went up 6.3 percent year on year in September, data from the National Bureau of Statistics showed Monday.

    The industrial output is used to measure the activity of designated large enterprises with an annual business turnover of at least 20 million yuan (about 2.81 million U.S. dollars).

    1. ltr


      October 24, 2022

      China rail-sea intermodal trains complete 7,000 trade corridor trips

      CHONGQING — A cargo train carrying containers of goods, including paper pulp, quartz sand, and ceramics, arrived in southwest China’s Chongqing Municipality on Saturday, marking the completion of the 7,000th rail-sea intermodal train trip running along the New International Land-Sea Trade Corridor this year.

      The train departed from Qinzhou port, Guangxi Zhuang Autonomous Region on Friday and arrived at the Tuanjie Village Station in Chongqing around 11 p.m. on Saturday, according to the New Land-Sea Corridor Operation Co., Ltd.

      Launched in 2017, the New International Land-Sea Trade Corridor is a trade and logistics passage jointly built by provincial-level regions in western China and ASEAN members.

      Over the past five years, the New International Land-Sea Trade Corridor has developed rapidly, expanding the number of destinations to 335 ports in 113 countries and regions.

  4. ltr


    October 15, 2022

    China, 2017-2022

    Real GDP, percent change ( 3.2)
    Real GDP ( 30,074) *
    Inflation rate, percent change ( 2.2)
    Investment, percent of GDP ( 44.8)
    Savings, percent of GDP ( 46.4)
    General government gross debt, percent of GDP ( 76.9)
    Current account balance, percent of GDP ( 1.8)

    * Billions of purchasing power parity dollars

  5. Macroduck

    “An eight-count indictment was unsealed today in federal court in Brooklyn charging a total of seven nationals of the People’s Republic of China (PRC)—Quanzhong An, his daughter Guangyang An, Tian Peng, Chenghua Chen, Chunde Ming, Xuexin Hou, and Weidong Yuan—with participating in a scheme to cause the forced repatriation of a PRC national residing in the United States.”


    More like kidnapping or slavery? Details to follow, I guess.

    1. pgl

      This being brought by Federal prosecutors in NYC says to me that they have the goods on these spies. New York prosecutors don’t play.

      Department of Justice
      U.S. Attorney’s Office
      Eastern District of New York
      Thursday, October 20, 2022
      Six Individuals Charged with Conspiring to Act as Illegal Agents of the People’s Republic of China
      PRC Officials Directed Multi-Year Campaign of Harassment Intended to Coerce U.S. Resident to Return to the PRC
      An eight-count indictment was unsealed today in federal court in Brooklyn charging a total of seven nationals of the People’s Republic of China (PRC)—Quanzhong An, his daughter Guangyang An, Tian Peng, Chenghua Chen, Chunde Ming, Xuexin Hou, and Weidong Yuan—with participating in a scheme to cause the forced repatriation of a PRC national residing in the United States. The lead defendant, Quanzhong An, allegedly acted at the direction and under the control of various officials with the PRC’s government’s Provincial Commission for Discipline Inspection (Provincial Commission)—including Peng, Chen, Ming, and Hou—to conduct surveillance of and engage in a campaign to harass and coerce a U.S. resident to return to the PRC as part of an international extralegal repatriation effort known as “Operation Fox Hunt.”

      Quanzhong An and Guangyang An were arrested this morning and are scheduled to be arraigned this afternoon before United States Magistrate Judge Ramon E. Reyes, Jr. The remaining defendants remain at large.

  6. Macroduck

    Off topic, climate change tipping points and “fake science” trolls –

    Some time ago, when I had mentioned climae-change tipping points, CoRev (aka CoVid) demanded links. He could easily have found tipping-point literature for himself, but he wasn’t actually interested. A large part of “fake science” climate-change denialism is the use of rhetorical trickery. The aim is to prevent casual readers from absorbing the overwhelming scientific consensus by distracting attention away from that consensus. It’s practically all CoVid ever does. Demanding links is a cheap way to raise doubt.

    CoVid wanted to pretend the idea of tipping points is dubious, despite widespread scientific support. Anyhow, another bit of research into climate-change tipping points has been released, so for those who are interested in the real science, here ya go:


    The big point of the new research is that the low end of the Paris Accord target range for limiting average global temperature rise, 1.5 degrees centigrade, is dangerously high. It risks triggering a cascade of climate events which are in themselves dangerous, and which would lead to a rise in temperatures beyond the 1.5 to 2 degree target range.

      1. pgl

        Did you READ this interview? I know you cannot articulate what it was about.

        Here’s a clue – he was discussing clouds and mentioning children’s books. So WTF does that have to do with Macroduck’s point? Oh yea there was some discussion of tipping points and your new guru admits this was a concern.

        Come on Brucie – either try to engage in a serious discussion or just stop posting gotcha links that you have not even read.

        1. Bruce Hall

          Come on, Dogbert. You really have no reading comprehension skills. You can’t even get to the central point that if something as central to the climate models as the impact of clouds is wrong (using a children’s book understanding of clouds), then the output is very suspect. But it goes beyond your day trading skills so I understand your confusion.

          Try re-reading the post v e r y s l o w l y and aloud.

          1. pgl

            “You really have no reading comprehension skills.”

            This from the moron who still has not pass preK reading. Got a life troll as your comments are not just dishonest and very stupid. They are BORING.

  7. ltr


    October 15, 2022

    Gross Domestic Product based on purchasing-power-parity (PPP) valuation * for Brazil, China, France, Germany, Hong Kong, India, Indonesia, Japan, Macao, Turkey, United Kingdom and United States, 2007-2022


    Brazil ( 3,783)
    China ( 30,633)
    France ( 3,688)
    Germany ( 5,317)

    Hong Kong ( 519)
    India ( 11,665)
    Indonesia ( 4,024)
    Japan ( 6,110)

    Macao ( 40)
    Turkey ( 3,321)
    United Kingdom ( 3,776)
    United States ( 25,035)

    * Data are expressed in US dollars adjusted for purchasing power parities (PPPs), which provide a means of comparing spending between countries on a common base. PPPs are the rates of currency conversion that equalise the cost of a given “basket” of goods and services in different countries.

  8. baffling

    one person had to die and 9 others hospitalized, so that we could run a test to show that ivermectin will not treat covid.
    what a waste. these people were basically used as props by trump and other maga idiots who promoted this snake oil treatment.
    note, when trump got sick, it was not ivermectin treatment that he sought. it was real medicine. and we had idiots on this board who promoted this rat poison.

      1. Moses Herzog

        I always assumed he had a small dose of motor oil he held over from the pre-synthetic years.

      2. Bruce Hall

        pgl, keep taking your boosters so that you won’t catch COVID, but when you do you won’t infect anyone else, but when you do you can tell them with smug superiority that you followed the science (but not the data).

        But then, if you did follow the data, you’d know that COVID is like a common cold or flu for the vast majority of people and primarily a problem for the unhealthy elderly. But, hey, keep commenting just like your hero, Dogbert… who believes only he has facts to back him up and has to resort to ad hominem and snide comments.

        But see, facts keep changing weekly.

        The data, for example, doesn’t line up with the big Pharma and the CDC wanting to make COVID vaccines part of the vaccination regimen for very young children. If they get COVID, they get better and gain immunity. It’s just another profit/control agenda under the guise of “protecting” us. Just like those “boosters” that “protect” you for a few weeks.

        But I understand how someone like you whose health is marginal would seek any possible protection. Maybe even a Dr. Fauci figurine for your dashboard. As for me, I’ll just stick with those annual flu shots. You should get yours; this year’s flu could be very bad.

        I’ll miss our tête-à-tête, but heading off for awhile for travels down south in my CO2 spewing SUV since golfing season is pretty much over in Michigan. It’ll help keep you warm in NYC this winter when the heating costs get outrageous. People like the warmth; that’s why New Yorkers are moving to Georgia and Florida. Oh, and to get away from the likes of Adams and Hochul… and maybe COVID that is infesting NY right now. All those vaccinated spreaders?

        1. pgl

          All that stupidity. I guess your daily doses of ivermectin has turned you into an angry little boy. But damn – your attempts to smear me fall incredibly short. OK – you are an angry little weasel who never grew up. But of course we all knew that a long time ago.

        2. pgl

          “But I understand how someone like you whose health is marginal would seek any possible protection.”

          Two miles of hill repeats, 30 minutes on bike, and a boxing class this morning. Dude – I do more in one day than your feeble little body has done in the last decade.

          Brucie – you do know anger management classes are available. Take one weasel. I’ll pay for it.

        3. pgl

          “A new study from the University of California, Davis, Genome Center, UC San Francisco and the Chan Zuckerberg Biohub shows no significant difference in viral load between vaccinated and unvaccinated people who tested positive for the delta variant of SARS-CoV-2. It also found no significant difference between infected people with or without symptoms. The findings underscore the continuing need for masking and regular testing alongside vaccination, especially in areas of high prevalence, the authors wrote.”

          I love it when Bruce Hall provides a link that undermines his MAGA BS. No one ever said vaccines were the cure for transmission. We take them to mitigate the damage from COVID and here the evidence is overwhelming. I have always aid we need to mask and test. It is Bruce Hall and his Trumpian friends who dismiss this advice.

          Bruce Hall is currently acting like a spoiled two year baby boy with his stupid anger. Of course most two year olds are ten times brighter than this angry troll.

        4. pgl

          “I’ll miss our tête-à-tête”.

          I will not miss your serial garbage. No – I prefer adult conversations. Do us all a favor troll – stick to Marginal Revolution where you belong.

        5. baffling

          “you’d know that COVID is like a common cold or flu for the vast majority of people ”
          this is not true. it was much more severe. it had death rate an order of magnitude greater than flu. and it certainly appears to leave longer lasting issues with folks who even have a mild case. only the introduction of vaccines has helped to put the pandemic under control.

          but bruce, this branch of the conversation was started because of the article on ivermectin. if one truly follows the data, then when can categorically say that ivermectin is not an effective treatment for covid. the fact that you promoted such snake oil puts you against the data. and we had to waste time (and lives) to run controlled studies to show what people already knew: a horse dewormer is not good treatment for covid. wasted resources. and wasted lives. because people like you could not stand up and criticize trump at the time for promoting snake oil treatments.

          I find it interesting that bruce will continue to take flu shots. and the data indicates for people of his demographic (old) they should take a covid booster as well-but he will decline that vaccine. he will take one, but not the other, because of politics. not science.

          1. pgl

            “you’d know that COVID is like a common cold or flu for the vast majority of people ”
            this is not true. it was much more severe. it had death rate an order of magnitude greater than flu. and it certainly appears to leave longer lasting issues with folks who even have a mild case. only the introduction of vaccines has helped to put the pandemic under control.

            Bruce Hall started flat out lying about this in early 2020. He is still flat out LYING. Do not expect him to stop lying. It is his mission in life.

          2. pgl

            BTW – I bet Brucie has taken the COVID vaccines. But remember he has a MAGA agenda so he will lie about that too. The idea that anything this self centered partisan piece of garbage is true is too much to ask from Brucie boy.

  9. pgl

    “The European Centre for Medium-Range Weather Forecasts has decided that Europe is likely to have a mild winter this year thanks its third consecutive year of La Niña influence”


    “Partly because of this, and partly because Europe has been successful in refilling its natural gas reserves, the price of gas has plummeted over the past month”

    Kevin Drum also provides graphs!

  10. Macroduck

    Also off topic, but that’s me, long and variable lags –

    From today’s WSJ: The IMF “said this month that interest-rate changes have their peak effect on growth in about one year and on inflation in three to four years.”

    So when we hear Fed officials say that recent inflation data lock in a 75 basis point rate hike in November, that ain’t “forward looking” in any meaningful sense. Forward-looking policy would be based on estimates of inflation three to four years hence, and the path forward to those estimates.

    The WSJ identifies the risk that weaker economic data may lead the Fed to take its foot off the brake too soon, and also that it may cause more economic harm than necessary. The Journal cites OJB saying that central banks may need to stop hiking rates while wages are rising, but may not because of “credibility”. How does wrong twice help with credibility?

    1. Macroduck

      Speaking of the Fed, the FOMC is due to adjust the funds rate soon. Here’s a quick reminder of the effect of rates on household balance sheets:


      Prior to the Great Recession, household debt service rose right along with household debt levels. during and after the Great Recession, the two series diverged – debt gradually recovered from the period of deleveraging, but debt service as a share of disposable income fell. Households have been able to carry more debt because monthly payments are (were) low.

      Let’s add one more series to the picture – a mortgage rate:


      See what’s going to happen to household balance sheets?

      Mortgage rates paid by households don’t rise just because the market rate rises. They rise because households take out new mortgages at higher interest rates. Rolling over mortgages takes time, especially when mortgage rates rise. Auto loans and credit card balances take less time. But it’ll happen, and when it does, well, you think inflation has put a whammy on household budgets? This is gonna hurt.

      1. Moses Herzog

        The Federal Reserve won’t be happy until they’ve overdone the tightening during a Democrat White House administration’s time. Even blue pills don’t give Georgetown Jerome the kind of excitement he gets thinking about that.

  11. pgl

    “Yangtze Memory Technologies Corp ousted American employees in core tech positions following the U.S. embargo on China. Several U.S. citizens and green card holders in China had already left the memory chip producer, the Financial Times reported. Some Americans reportedly were key to YMTC’s Nand memory chip production breakthroughs. ”

    I just read this and thought how dumb could YMTC get. If China wants to back to mere contract manufacturing – this is not going to help their economic growth. And we thought Trump’s trade policy was dumb.

  12. Moses Herzog

    Thundering here, like a rolling thunder I think we haven’t gotten this time of year in a long long time (though I don’t know, just my non-reliable memory) and just finished watching a weird film called “John and the Hole”

    I’m wondering if a post on the recent state of bond convexity in the current market context might not be very interesting??

    1. Anonymous


      i will not touch anything greater than 6 month, likely 3 month.

      stocks out of the question!

      maturing short notes, i buy short notes tomorrow!

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