China's export growth rebounded more strongly than expected in December from a three-month low, expanding at the fastest rate in seven months.
Trade data from the world's second-largest economy showed the value of exports grew 14.1 percent last month compared with a year earlier, racing past the forecasts of analysts polled by Reuters, who had expected annual growth of 4 percent, and accelerating sharply from 2.9 percent in November.
China's trade surplus soared to $31.6 billion in December, trouncing estimates and widening sharply from a $19.6 billion surplus in November, aided by a strong growth in the country's exports. Official data released Thursday showed exports expanded 14.1% during the month from the year-earlier period, while imports grew 6%. A survey of economists by Dow Jones Newswires estimated a trade surplus of $19.6 billion, exports growth of 4.6% and a 3.3% increase in imports. The steep increase in December's positive trade balance boosted China's full-year trade surplus for 2012 to $231.1 billion, 48.1% higher than the level recorded in 2011, according to a Xinhua news report. Chinese stocks jumped following the data release.