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China urban fixed-asset investment up 32.9% in first seven months


    China's urban fixed-asset investment rose 32.9 percent in the first seven months from a year earlier to 9.59 trillion yuan (1.4 trillion U.S. dollars), the National Bureau of Statistics (NBS) announced Tuesday, Aug. 11.

    The growth rate was 5.6 percentage points higher than the same period last year, but 0.7 percentage point lower than the first half of this year, when urban fixed-asset investment rose 33.6 percent from a year earlier.

    June alone saw a 35.3-percent rise. The NBS provided no monthly figures for July.

    Peng Wensheng, analyst with Barclays Capital, said in a statement e-mailed to Xinhua that the slowdown in new lending may have contributed to the moderation in urban fixed-asset investment growth.

    Chinese banks extended 355.9 billion yuan of yuan-dominated loans in July, less than a quarter of the June total of more than 1.5 trillion yuan.

    Zhu Baoliang, an economist with the State Information Center, a government think-tank, said the growth rate was below expectations, and the slower increase resulted from commercial banks tightening lending in the second half to prevent a rise in bad debt after a record surge.

    The growth rate in the primary sector (including farming, fishing and forestry) jumped 62.5 percent from a year earlier.

    The industrial sector saw investment rise 27.8 percent and the tertiary sector, covering commerce, finance and services, saw a 36.5-percent growth.

    China unveiled a 4-trillion-yuan stimulus package last November to boost investment in factories, property, roads and other facilities to counter falling exports and fuel growth of the world's third largest economy.

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