Is China ready to rev up? Two companies issuing earnings reports on Monday gave some hints that it's a possibility.
"We sure see China past the bottom, and I'm optimistic about China in 2013, actually," Doug Oberhelman, chief executive officer of Caterpillar, said in an interview on CNBC's "Squawk Box".
China's economy has been slowing down for the last seven quarters, with the latest GDP reading
It is particularly concerning to companies like Caterpillar , which sees China as a key market for its mining and earth moving equipment.
Peabody Energy, a major coal producer, also reported seeing some signs of improvement in China, albeit tempered ones.
"China's coal imports remained strong in the third quarter to serve coastal demand, despite softening underlying demand in China," Peabody said
Coal is key to electrical usage in the country and many economists look to its consumption as a gauge of the country's economic performance since reports from the government are sometimes mistrusted. (Related: Growth Trends for China)
Indeed China's Vice Premier Li Keqiang himself has said he favors three indicators over government growth statistics: electricity consumption, rail volume, and bank loans.
By those measures the country is still struggling. China's electricity consumption in September was only up 2.9 percent, well below the 11.7 percent logged for 2011, according to Dow Jones. Rail cargo volume declined 9.2 percent in August and new bank loans were down 11 percent in September from August.