China’s Recent Trade Statistics Have Been Artificially Inflated

Until now, Beijing’s monthly import and export numbers have been considered absolutely reliable, yet there is growing evidence to suggest that in recent months they have been distorted by fabricated transactions.

Especially suspect are the export figures for this September and October. China’s exports for September soared 9.9 percent year-on-year. In the following month, they jumped 11.6 percent. For many observers, the September number signaled the beginning of the long-awaited recovery of the Chinese economy.

The September-October period is now beginning to look like an anomaly from the baseline, represented by the more-typical August and November figures.

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