Gross domestic product (GDP) totaled 90.0309 trillion yuan (about 13.28 trillion US dollars) in 2018, with the service sector accounting for more than half of the total. Between the two countries that is nearly 40% of the world's GDP from just these two countries. In fact, China's debt to GDP ratio stands at a whopping 300% (unofficial figure). However, we differ from consensus on what we expect from 2019, where we believe we will still see growth of 6.4 percent.
Meantime, a downturn in iPhone sales in China has hurt Apple Inc.'s share price this month and raised question marks over whether the consumer can keep cushioning the economy's re-balancing.
Analysts at Standard Chartered point out that China's GDP growth moderated to 6.4% y/y in Q4-2018 from 6.5% in Q3 and 6.8% in H1, in line with market expectations, while full-year 2018 growth was 6.6%, versus 6.8% in 2017.
With President Xi Jinping's top economic aide Liu He heading to the US this month, the challenging economic background adds pressure to reach a deal on trade.
The Chinese government is treading a narrow path in seeking to stimulate growth.
Fixed-asset investment rose 5.9 percent in 2018, the slowest in at least 22 years, as a regulatory crackdown on riskier financing and debt weighed on local government spending early in the year.
In any case, stimulus measures are losing their impact.
Late birdie run keeps Mickelson ahead at Desert Classic
Justin Rose , the No. 1 player on the official World Golf Ranking, also improved to move into a tie for 28th place (8 under). And I made a lot of birdies. "It was a fun day, but I certainly did not expect this to be the case", says Phil Mickelson.
Chai Zhenwu, president of the China Population Association, told media in October last year that the number of people born will continue to fall over the next few years.
We had already begun to see this during the Obama years with the USA pivot to Asia to hedge against China's rise. A great deal of that investment has gone to waste with as many as 65 million apartments in China that are unoccupied.
China's economy slowed dramatically during 2018, dropping to its lowest point in almost 30 years as the communist country continues battling a prolonged tariff fight against President Donald Trump.
The World Bank report produced earlier this month warned of "storm clouds" with lower growth expected in the major economies.
The US-based Conference Board, a widely respected global business think tank, said its methodology indicates growth of 4.1 per cent for 2018. This was in line with forecasts, including projections from the International Monetary Fund. Overall it reduced its forecast growth for the advanced economies, with growth set to drop from 2.3 percent in 2018 to 2 percent this year and falling to 1.7 percent in 2020.
The number of babies born in 2018 fell by two million to 15.23 million, raising fears an ageing society will pile further pressure on an already slowing economy.
Berlin-based think tank Mercator Institute for China Studies, published a report January 10 projecting that if the trade dispute can't be settled, China's export sector could "take an immediate hit, leading to mass layoffs of workers".
Demand is weakening globally, not just in the United States.