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China Center Chart of the Week: Moderating consumption growth rate evident in Chinese New Year’s data

This year’s CNY data highlight some of the most important trends for consumption in China. First, the anti-corruption drive is combining with the ongoing economic slowdown to dent headline real consumption growth. As of yet, Chinese consumers have showed resiliency to these developments – but whether such improvements in purchasing power can continue as the economic deceleration continues is a huge question. Second, while consumption growth in some smaller, western cities appears exceptionally high, it is coming off an extremely low base – too low a base to “move the needle” on consumption in any meaningful way. And finally, the continued migration to e-commerce looks to be on an accelerating trend, one that benefits from the ever-increasing rents of physical retail locations.

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