China reports third-quarter gross domestic product

China reported third-quarter growth data Thursday that met expectations.

The country’s National Bureau of Statistics said its third-quarter GDP growth was 6.8 percent compared to the same period last year, a day after President Xi Jinping made big promises for the country’s economic future during a pivotal leadership meeting.

Economists polled by Reuters had forecast China to post a modest drop from the second quarter, with GDP to have grown 6.8 percent in the July-September period due to the government’s efforts to cool the property market and cut debt risks. This is a tad lower than the second quarter’s 6.9 percent expansion.

According to a statement from the statistics bureau, China’s economic development in first three quarters was steady and moved in a positive direction.

However, it also highlighted challenges in a complex international environment amid structural changes domestically.

“The long-touted managed slowdown of the Chinese economy seems to have taken shape in the third quarter following a stellar [first-half] performance,” said Ricard Torne, head of economic research at Barcelona-based FocusEconomics.

Data have shown faster-than-expected deceleration in economic activity due to several factors including a cooling real estate market and a strengthening Chinese yuan, Torne wrote in the recent note.

China’s economy will continue its “managed deceleration” in 2018 as policymakers try to achieve more sustainable growth trajectory, he added. FocusEconomics forecast China’s third-quarter GDP at 6.7 percent.

On Monday, the People’s Bank of China quoted its governor, Zhou Xiaochuan, as saying the world’s second-largest economy is likely to post growth of 7 percent in the second half of the year thanks to rapid household spending. First half GDP growth was 6.9 percent.

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