China's economic growth in the first quarter of 2012 dipped to
a slower than expected 8.1%, down from 8.9% the previous quarter
and the slowest rate in three years.
While most economists had projected 8.3% growth, weak demand from
the US and Europe coupled with the reluctance of Chinese
consumers dented gross domestic product. Furthermore, the World
Bank cut its projections for Chinese growth in 2012 to 8.2% from
While Asian markets still showed gains, European markets were
down across the board.
By early afternoon today, London's FTSE had fallen 0.66%, the
German DAX had tumbled 1.13% and the French CAC 40 had
depreciated 1.63%. The euro fell 0.44 to $1.3126, while the
British pound depreciated 0.19% to $1.5927.
Overnight, Australian stocks (
) climbed 0.97%. Despite the dip in China's GDP, Australian
miners got a boost with the rise in oil and commodities prices
overnight. BHP Billiton stock climbed 1.68%, and Rio Tinto shares
Tokyo's Nikkei (
) rose 1.19%. Despite Sony CEO Kazuo Hirai's announcement
this week that he would cut 10,000 jobs over the next year, the
electronics firm's stock plummeted 5.50%.
Elsewhere in the region, Singaporean shares (
) climbed 0.33% and in China, the Shanghai Composite (
) got a boost of 0.35%. Seoul's KOSPI (
), meanwhile, climbed 1.12%.
The Chinese yuan fell 0.07% to 6.3022 to the dollar, while the
Japanese yen appreciated 0.21% to 81.01 against the