China trades were on the mind of Fast Money trader Brian Kelly, Monday morning, after the country officially became the world’s second largest economy – surpassing Japan.
“It seems like the Chinese domestic economy is picking up,” said Kelly, founder of Kanundrum Capital.
Kelly was focused on China import data released Monday morning from China’s General Administration of Customs. The country’s imports jumped 51% in January from the prior year as China’s industrial sector continued to take flight.
The news was a bullish sign for the entire commodity space, said Kelly, but of all the commodities, he said none benefits more than copper . China’s copper imports hit a four-month high in January, according to the customs administration. That information caused copper futures to rise nearly 2% this morning to a six day high. Copper is up nearly 50% in the past year.
China’s economic ascendance, however, is not simply due to its own domestic strength.
Japan’s weakness played a part. Japan’s fourth quarter GDP shrank 1.1% from the same period last year, according to data released Monday. The contraction put the country’s full-year GDP at $5.47 trillion, below China’s $5.88 trillion full-year GDP. It was the first time that China’s full-year GDP surpassed Japan’s own.
Still, shares on the Nikkei Stock Average were higher Monday morning, despite the weak – but widely anticipated – GDP news.
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CNBC.com with wires.