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|A government-backed think tank is predicting first quarter gross domestic product growth to fall to 6.85 percent Anders Lee Salute to Service Jersey , as a vice-finance minister said this year could be the "most challenging" economic environment since the global financial crisis in 2008.
A report by the National Academy of Economic Strategy, under the Chinese Academy of Social Sciences, said GDP growth will slip from the fourth quarter's 7.3 percent and the key inflation gauge, the consumer price index, will rise 1.2 percent year-on-year in the first quarter.
If its prediction proves right, it would be the second-worst quarterly performance since the first quarter of 2009 Cal Clutterbuck Salute to Service Jersey , when growth plunged to 6.1 percent in the aftermath of the global financial crisis.
Using a set of monthly data released by the National Bureau of Statistics, Bloomberg has calculated that monthly GDP growth in January slowed to 6.85 percent and 6.28 percent in February.
Wang Hongju, a CASS researcher, said, however, that China has "ample ammunition" to deal with downward economic pressure in the second quarter Josh Bailey Salute to Service Jersey , including reserve requirement ratio cuts, loan-deposit ratio adjustments and infrastructure spending.
The new CASS figures came as vice-minister of finance Zhu Guangyao said over the weekend that he considered the current international economic environment as the most challenging since the global financial crisis.
He told the China Development Forum that under current conditions the country should adopt a "proactive fiscal policy" while maintaining a prudent monetary policy that is "neither too loose nor too tight".
The government has expressed its willingness to allow its biggest ever budget deficit in 2015 since 2008 to support spending. The Ministry of Finance has also announced that local governments will be able to swap 1 trillion yuan ($161.2 billion) of maturing, high-interest local debt for new official municipal or provincial bonds, to help ease their repayment burden.
Zhu said the swap arrangements would allow China to rein in possible risks from short-term local government bonds.
But the authorities, he emphasized, must prevent the problem of "moral hazard" Jordan Eberle Salute to Service Jersey , without elaborating further, referring to an economic situation in which one party takes more risk because someone else is likely to bear the burden of that risk.
The ministry's priorities this year, he said, include structural tax cuts, especially unnecessary fees imposed on micro and small firms, and spending previously idle government funds.
He also said the government should reflect the massive stimulus policies adopted a few years ago. These policies are believed to be causes of the current economic woes.
Cai Hongbin Nick Leddy Salute to Service Jersey , dean of Guanghua School of Management at Peking University, said despite ongoing challenges, the government - compared with some Western counterparts - has a "much more powerful" toolbox at its disposal to stabilize the economy.
However, he warned that China also has weaknesses in its "market mechanisms" too, for example an inflexible labor market and an inefficient financial market. "That's what the government has to fix, and the willingness to fix these shortfalls will determine business confidence and whether the investment environment recovers Authentic Anthony Beauvillier Jersey ," he said.
HOUSTON, Jan. 29 (Xinhua) -- ConocoPhillips, the world's largest independent oil and gas company, on Thursday reported a loss in the final quarter of 2014 and slashed its capital budget for the second time this year in response to the plummeting crude prices.
The Houston-based company announced in a statement released Thursday that it saw a net loss of 39 million U.S. dollars, or about 3 cents per share, compared with a 2.5 billion U.S. dollars or 2.00 dollars per share performance in the fourth quarter of 2013.
Its full-year 2014 earnings were 6.9 billion U.S. dollars Authentic Casey Cizikas Jersey , or 5.51 U.S. dollars per share, compared with full-year 2013 earnings of 9.2 billion U.S. dollars, or 7.38 U.S. dollars per share.
In anticipation of weak 2015 commodity prices, the company also further reduced its expected 2015 capital expenditures to 11.5 billion U.S. dollars from the 13.5 billion U.S. dollars previously announced.
Reductions will come primarily from the deferral of onshore drilling and exploration programs in the Lower 48, and deferral of major project spending. At this level of capital, the company expects to achieve 2-3 percent production growth in 2015 from continuing operations Authentic Adam Pelech Jersey , excluding Libya.
"We are responding decisively to a weak price outlook in 2015 by exercising our capital and balance sheet flexibility," said Ryan Lance, chairman and chief executive officer. "In this environment our priorities are to protect our dividend and base production, stay on track for cash flow neutrality in 2017, and preserve future opportunities."
ConocoPhillips' latest announcement came as oil companies began announcing spending cuts and job cuts following a steep slide in oil prices since last summer. Analysts expect most energy companies to cut their 2015 spending by 20 percent or more.
ConocoPhillips was created through the merger of Conoco Inc. and the Phillips Petroleum Co. in 2002. It is the world's largest independent pure-play exploration and production company and the third-largest U.S. energy producer behind ExxonMobil and Chevron.
French President Emmanuel Macron and his wife Brigitte Macron visit the Palace Museum, or the Forbidden City Authentic Calvin De Haan Jersey , in Beijing, capital of China, Jan. 9, 2018. The French president is paying a state visit to China from Monday to Wednesday. (XinhuaZhou Gaoliang)
BRUSSELS, Jan. 10 (Xinhua) -- Upon concluding his successful visit to China, a short video showing French President Emmanuel Macron learning Mandarin endeared him to the Chinese people and demonstrated in full detail of what said he would bring to China in building a new relationship.
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