China factory activity shrinks
China's factory activity contracted for a fifth straight month in August, official data showed on Thursday, as pressure mounts on Beijing to offer more policy support to bolster its sluggish economy.
The reading is the latest to indicate the nation's post-Covid recovery is running off the tracks owing to a decline in overseas demand as well as a drop-off in consumption at home.
The official manufacturing purchasing managers' index (PMI) -- a key measure of factory output -- came in at 49.7 in August, below the 50-point mark that separates expansion and contraction, according to the National Bureau of Statistics (NBS).
Still, the reading was slightly higher than the July reading and also beat forecasts.
The non-manufacturing PMI, which includes activity in the construction and services sectors, fell to 51.0, from 51.5 in July, according to NBS data.