The world’s second largest economy is displaying signs of weakening, sparking a negative reaction on global markets.
China reported that its exports dropped 4.4 per cent in December, its biggest monthly fall in two years — while its imports plunged 7.6 per cent, its steepest decline since July 2016.
Furthermore, in 2018 China posted its biggest trade surplus with the United States on record, which could prompt US President Donald Trump to turn up the heat on Beijing in their bitter trade dispute.
Softening demand in China is being felt around the world — with slowing sales of goods from smartphones to automobiles — prompting Apple to issue a rare profit warning in recent weeks.
Fears of slowing global economic growth led to a risk-averse mentality in equity markets overnight.