BEIJING, Feb 14 (Reuters) - China’s January dollar-denominated exports rose 9.1 percent from a year earlier, while imports dropped 1.5 percent, both beating analysts’ expectations, official data showed on Thursday.
That left the country with a trade surplus of $39.16 billion for the month, the General Administration of Customs said.
Analysts polled by Reuters had expected both exports and imports to fall for a second straight month, but cautioned the trend could be distorted by the timing of the long Lunar New Year holidays, which fell in early February this year.
Exports had been forecast to decline 3.2 percent, after a 4.4 percent drop in December. Imports were expected to have dropped 10 percent, after declining 7.6 percent in the preceding month.
Analysts were also expecting China’s trade surplus to have narrowed in January to $33.5 billion from $57.06 billion in December.
China’s economic growth slowed to a 28-year low in 2018 and is expected to cool further this year, weighed down by weakening demand at home and an escalating trade war with the United States.
Beijing is widely expected to announce more growth-boosting measures in coming months to reduce the risk of a sharper slowdown. (Reporting by Beijing Monitoring Desk; Editing by Kim Coghill)