Additional evidence indicates that global economic growth has slowed to near zero in the past month or so. China reported trade numbers. Exports were up only 2.9% in November. It may be a sign that holiday spending rates around the world will be tepid.
It also will fuel the debate over whether China is in a period of recovery, which recent PMI data showed, or whether recession throughout much of the rest of the world will pull the People’s Republic under. Bloomberg writes:
China’s reliance on trade has declined as domestic consumption grows but export-driven manufacturing still employs millions of workers and any weakness raises the risk of job losses and unrest. Global demand for China’s goods is so weak that the government has said exports likely will contribute nothing to this year’s overall economic growth. Western export markets face uncertainties including the U.S. “fiscal cliff” — or impending automatic tax and spending cuts that could disrupt economic growth — and the euro area debt crisis.
Douglas A. McIntyre