China delivers growth but with shadow of inflation

On an easy comparison, Chinese Q4 GDP rose 10.7% y/o/y, .2% higher than expected but it came with higher inflation as Dec CPI rose 1.9% y/o/y, .5% above forecasts and is the main reason why China has taken the path of trying to tame lending excesses, particularly in the property market (in another step, they sold 3 mo bills today 4 bps above last week). Retail sales in China ran above estimates but IP was a touch below. After hitting a 4 week low, the Shanghai index rose slightly but Hong Kong fell to a 3 month low. The euro is at the lowest level since July ’09 after the Jan Euro zone services and manufacturing composite index unexpectedly fell. A European newspaper said the EU may lend money to Greece instead of them relying on the IMF but that has been denied as a German official said Greece must solve its own problems and the Greek Finance Minister said they aren’t expecting the help. Greek bonds are up but stocks are at 9 month lows.

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