The Wall Street JournalThe Wall Street Journal

The fear behind China’s pivot on stimulus spending

By Stella Yifan Xie and Keith Zhai

16 Jun 2023 · 5 min read

informed Summary

  1. China's economy is losing steam, with weakened property market and record high youth unemployment.

A few months ago, Chinese leaders were basking in signs that the world’s second-largest economy was rebounding sharply after three years of tough Covid-19 controls.

By April and May, however, disturbing reports were trickling in. Teams sent to conduct surveys of local-government finances returned to Beijing with news that officials were struggling to repay debts, people familiar with the matter said. Government meetings with regional business leaders revealed that confidence remained weak, even after the unexpected lifting of Covid restrictions late last year.

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