BEIJING, June 27 (Xinhua) -- China's industrial profits continued to rise in the first five months but growth was slightly down from the Jan.-April period, still encouraging sign.
Industrial businesses saw their profits rise by 9.8 percent from a year ago in the first five months of 2014, the National Bureau of Statistics (NBS) said on Friday.
Total profits of industrial companies with annual business revenue of more than 20 million yuan (3.2 million U.S. dollars) reached 2.28 trillion yuan from January to May.
Profit growth was 0.2 percentage points down from 10-percent year-on-year increase recorded in the first four months and 10.1 percent in the first quarter, data showed.
Growth was generally satisfactory compared with that of January and February when disappointing economic indicators, including exports and PMI, stirred concerns over the economic outlook.
Economic growth slipped to the lowest quarterly expansion since the third quarter of 2012 in the Jan.-March period , but key indicators have shown the economy is gradually gaining strength.
Growth in the manufacturing sector continued to accelerate in May, hitting a five-month high; China's exports also picked up in May by a seven-percent year-on-year increase, reversing weak performances in previous months.
Zhang Liqun, a researcher at the Development Research Center of the State Council, pointed to the improving data was an indication that "the economy continued to stabilize, and this trend is becoming evident".
Recent targeted policy easing is also expected to take effect and help the economic advance to remain stable.
Official GDP growth in the second quarter will be released by the NBS on July 17, along with other indicators including industrial output, investment and retail sales.