China's GDP grows 6.8% in first quarter, more than expected

China first-quarter GDP growth seen easing only slightly as trade tensions mount

They also say exports to Europe, the USA and Southeast Asia increased. The pound touched a near three-month high of $1.4346 and in reach of a post-Brexit referendum high with focus on data that could cement expectations of a May interest rate increase by the Bank of England.

Analysts say the main risk to China's economy is now centred on the escalating trade dispute with the United States.

There were still some trade war noises being made though.

Beijing then said it would slap a hefty temporary tariff on USA sorghum imports after finding they had damaged the domestic industry.

China's economy grew 6.8 percent in the first quarter of 2018, slightly faster than expected, buoyed by strong consumer demand and surprisingly robust property investment despite continued measures to tame rising home prices, Reuters reports.

China will release first quarter GDP on Tuesday, along with March industrial output, retail sales, property sales and investment, and fixed asset investment data. "Geopolitics will impact the markets again".

While economic growth could bounce back in spring due to seasonal factors such as a pick-up in construction, analysts still maintain that activity in China will start to cool eventually, weighed down by a cooling property market and rising borrowing costs.


To realize the moderately prosperous society, defined by Beijing as doubling its 2010 GDP and per capita income by 2020, China's economy needs to expand at an average annual rate of around 6.5 percent until then.

The euro was steady at $1.2377.

"We have had a long enough period of extended volatility now that some of the more extended positions in risk assets have been reduced so that is also a positive", said Michael Metcalfe, head of global macro strategy at State Street Global Markets.

China is aiming to re-engineer its growth model, from driven by massive state-led spending to a domestic consumption-led economy, tolerating a moderate slowdown to carry out hard reforms along the way.

U.S. President Donald Trump's comments on Monday about China and Russian Federation trying to devalue their currencies continued to weigh on the dollar, with investors believing that the U.S. administration wants a weaker currency.

China likely carried most of its strong economic momentum from previous year into the first quarter of 2018, with government crackdowns on financial risks and industrial pollution dragging less on activity than earlier expected, a Reuters poll showed.

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