China’s trade with the rest of the world withered in April under pressure from Covid-19 lockdowns and sagging demand from overseas, signaling the global economy is losing steam as high inflation eats into consumer spending.
The pullback in exports that have helped power China’s growth is compounding worries over a world economy already shaken by war in Ukraine and rising interest rates in the U.S. and Europe.
China’s exports rose 3.9% from a year earlier in April, data from China’s customs bureau showed Monday, tumbling from 14.7% growth a month earlier. That was the weakest increase in nearly two years and matched a median forecast made by economists polled by The Wall Street Journal.
Imports were flat in April from a year earlier, easing from a 0.1% decline in March. That was a better performance than the 3% decline expected by the polled economists.