Chinese indices make gains on better-than-expected trade figures

<p>China’s stock indices have climbed following the release of encouraging trade data.</p>

China's main stock benchmarks have rallied this morning (February 8th), after official trade data proved to be better than analysts had originally anticipated.

According to the country's official statistics bureau, the key export market surged by 25 per cent in January compared to the previous year, despite the global economic downturn continuing to drag on orders to key partners such as the US and Europe.

Most analysts had anticipated a 17 per cent jump, so this news has done much to buoy the markets.

Imports were also up, with January seeing a 28.8 per cent year on year rise, indicating a robust uptick in domestic demand – something the government is working to encourage in a bid to offset export falls.

Separate data shows inflation slowed to two per cent in January, but there are concerns over a rise in food prices as the price of vegetables increased.

At close of play this morning, the Shanghai SSE Composite rose by 0.5 per cent to an index value of 2432.4 points and the Hong Kong Hang Seng climbed by 0.1 per cent to 23215.1 points.

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