China's economic pulse appears to be steadying, with quarterly growth data released Wednesday beating forecasts, but that renewed long-standing concerns over data accuracy.
For the second quarter, China reported gross domestic product (GDP) grew 7.0 percent on-year, beating a Reuters poll forecast for 6.9 percent. Industrial output for June rose 6.8 percent on-year, beating a Reuters poll forecast for 6.0 percent, while last month's retail sales climbed 10.6 percent, ahead of the Reuters poll forecast for 10.2 percent.
A spokesperson for China's National Bureau of Statistics said GDP figures weren't inflated and the improvement was "hard won," according to a Reuters report. Analysts often doubt the accuracy of official data on the world's second-largest economy.
"The stronger-than-expected figure will inevitably spark renewed questions over the veracity of the official data," Julian Evans-Pritchard, a China economist at Capital Economics, said in a note Wednesday. But he added, "While actual growth is almost certainly a percentage point or two slower than the official figures show, there are good reasons to think that the latest figures are mirroring a genuine stabilization of conditions on the ground."
That's a sentiment mirrored by Louis Kuijs, a China economist at RBS.