China retail sales growth slows, but consumers still confident
HONG KONG (REUTERS) - China's retail sales growth slowed during the Golden Week break, but demand was better than expected, and a raft of other data helped provide a snapshot of increasingly important sources of demand in the world's second-largest economy.
The National Day holiday at the start of October, when millions of people travel and spend more than usual, brings huge discounts and promotions as retailers battle for market share.
Overall retail sales grew 15 per cent during the holiday, which coincided with the Mid-Autumn festival to provide a rare eight-day break. That compared with 17.5 per cent growth last year during a seven-day holiday.
"On the bright side, the figures suggested that consumer sentiment on the mainland is still strong and people are willing to spend despite the slowing economy," said Mr Alex Fan, head of research at ICBC International, the wholly-owned HK subsidiary of the Industrial and Commercial Bank of China.