Canton Fair Visits, Orders Point to More Export Pain

The Canton Fair indicator has proven useful in the past and if it still works, it points to a further slowdown in trade next year.

Nikkei: Sliding Canton Fair orders signal poor outlook for producers
Foreign orders at China's leading trade show slipped 7.4%...

...Traffic from Europe shrank more than 10% from last fall...

"The number of buyers coming by our booth fell 20% from this year's spring session," said a woman from Zhejiang Province who was selling automotive lighting. "Brazil's weakening currency has sunk traffic from there, and visitors from Russia have declined by a large margin, too."
The drops in orders and visitors are worse than the May figures, pointing to an intensifying slowdown in 2016.

The number of visitors fell 4.6% overall and the number of visitors from the countries involved in the "New Silk Road" initiative fell about 12%.
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A slow and steady decline in attendance and export orders has reduced them to levels seen 10 years ago. Rising wages, a stronger yuan and production moving offshore are all factors (among others), but rebalancing away from exports doesn't lead to a drop in exports in a growing economy, it leads to faster growth in imports. China's record trade surplus in October indicates the Canton Fair data warrants a bearish interpretation.

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