China’s consumer prices fell for a fourth month, making it easier for the government to keep interest rates low and boost spending to revive the world’s third-largest economy.
Prices dropped 1.4 percent in May from a year earlier, after falling 1.5 percent in April, the statistics bureau said today. The median estimate in a Bloomberg News survey of 16 economists was for a 1.3 percent decline. Producer prices fell 7.2 percent, the most on record.
Inflation may return as the economy recovers and commodity prices climb from last year’s lows. The central bank triggered an explosion in credit this year by scrapping restrictions on growth in new loans and keeping the one-year lending rate at a four-year low of 5.31 percent.