January and February trade data likely to show coronavirus impact

China will release combined trade data for January and February today following a switch from earlier statements indicating the separate

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Photo: Bloomberg

China will release combined trade data for January and February today following a switch from earlier statements indicating the separate announcement of both months’ data.

The Customs Administration of China issued a press statement in February explaining the combined release was meant to compensate for irregularities caused for Chinese Lunar New Year, when economic activity in the country generally stops.

This economic data is eagerly awaited following the completion of the Phase One Trade deal between the US and China. The trade deal, meant to deescalate the trade war between the two countries, sees China lowering tariffs, purchasing more US manufactured and agricultural goods, and beefing up their intellectual property laws, and the US promising to buy more Chinese manufactured goods. This data will help show whether China has been upholding its end of the bargain.

Today’s numbers are also expected to highlight the damage done by the coronavirus outbreak to the Chinese economy. The virus has hurt global stock markets and Chinese production and global exports.

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