by Edoardo Campanella
At the moment, markets track the performance of the Chinese economy by focusing on indicators that apply, for the most part, to the old economy and pretty much ignore developments in services. Every month analysts closely monitor data on China's exports, consumption of raw materials, and industrial production. They also scrutinize the moves of Chinese authorities, such as the adoption of expansionary monetary policies, to understand whether they are meant to support struggling manufacturers. At the beginning of January, for example, analysts used a string of disappointing figures from the industrial sector, coupled with an ill-timed depreciation of the yuan against the U.S. dollar by the People's Bank of China, to confirm the direst predictions of an imminent economic crash. But China's economy is, in fact, far from collapse and growing at an official estimate of 6.9 percent.
Moreover, given the opacity of China's official
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