China’s exports dip, but car sales up

Associated Press

BEIJING — The decline in China’s exports accelerated in February, but Asia’s bleak picture was tempered by other news today of a jump in Chinese auto sales and a smaller-than-expected drop in Japanese machinery orders.

Most Asian stock markets surged after Wall Street staged a massive rally on news that Citigroup is turning a profit, a welcome respite after weeks of gloom — although many analysts predict the market rebound will be short-lived.

Chinese trade figures highlighted again the region’s dependence on Western consumers. Exports in February plunged 25.7 percent from a year earlier, worse than January’s 17.5 percent decline, according to customs data.

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