There has been increasing chatter in recent weeks about the possibility of China unleashing a fresh round of stimulus, but those who are hoping for an 'all-guns-blazing' announcement could be left disappointed, analysts say.
"I think the market is pricing in a 'big bang' type of announcement and if that doesn't come out – which it looks like will be the case – then investors will be disappointed," said Daniel Hynes, commodities strategist at Hynes Commodities.
Recent bearish Chinese data, from manufacturing activity to trade figures, have heightened speculation that Beijing will move to prop up its economy.
According Xinhua news agency Friday, Chinese Premier Li Keqiang reiterated this week that the government had well-prepared policies in place and would roll out targeted measures step by step to aid the economy. The news raised further hopes of imminent action from Beijing and helped Asian stock markets erase losses earlier in the day.
Nomura analysts believe fresh stimulus could come as soon as next quarter, in the form of a 50 basis point cut to the central bank's reserve requirement ratio (RRR) - or the amount of cash they must set aside as reserves - both in the second and third quarter
But Hynes said China has already been quietly stimulating its economy over the past year in drip feeds, by the way of infrastructure spending.