The price index is being depressed by the slowdown in domestic consumption, which is hampering economic recovery. Analysts define this phenomenon as a negative spiral
China’s consumer price index fell into negative territory for the first time in more than two years last month, weighed down by the slowdown in domestic consumption that hampered economic recovery. This index, the main inflation indicator, fell by 0.3% on an annual basis in July, the National Bureau of Statistics (SNB) reported on Wednesday. In June inflation was zero.
Slow domestic consumption is holding back the recovery
Unlike major economies struggling with inflation, China in deflation for the first time in more than two years, weighed down by weak domestic consumption, which hampers economic recovery. Deflation is the opposite of inflation, which is falling prices of goods and services. While it may sound good for purchasing power on paper, deflation poses a threat to the economy. Instead of spending, consumers are postponing purchases in the hope of further price reductions. In the absence of demand, companies are forced to cut production, freeze hiring or layoffs, and accept further reductions to clear inventories, weighing on their profitability as costs remain unchanged. Economists call this phenomenon a negative spiral. China’s consumer price index, the main measure of inflation, fell 0.3% year-on-year in July, according to the National Bureau of Statistics (NBS). Analysts polled by Bloomberg had expected prices to fall 0.4%, following zero inflation last month. On a monthly basis, consumer prices are marking +0.2% from -0.2% earlier and against estimates of -0.1%. Producer prices are also bad: -4.4% pa, worse than expected from -4.1% and better than -5.4% in June.