China Indicator Shows Growth Quickening

A Chinese leading indicator climbed, adding to evidence that the world’s second-biggest economy is maintaining momentum as Premier Wen Jiabao extends a campaign to cool inflation.

The index rose 0.5 percent to 155 in May, The Conference Board said on its website today, citing a preliminary reading. The gauge is designed to capture prospects over the coming six months. April’s index was revised to a 0.1 percent gain from a previous 0.2 percent increase.

China, the world’s fastest-growing major economy, may expand more than 9 percent this year, even after the central bank boosted interest rates and controlled lending to cool the quickest inflation in three years in June. Growth may be strong enough to withstand more monetary tightening as local governments raise spending on low-cost housing and manufacturers build more factories in inland provinces.

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