Monthly data has improved from March, with industrial production, retail sales, fixed asset investment all growing. However, with weak demand at home and abroad, analysts say China's efforts to get the economy back to fully will likely take time.
Industrial production, a measurement of output in China's manufacturing, mining and utilities sectors, grew 3.9 per cent from a year earlier, following a 1.1 per cent contraction in March. This was much better than the median result of a Bloomberg poll of analysts, which predicted 1.5 per cent growth.
In the first quarter, this vital part of the Chinese economy shrank by 8.4 per cent compared to a year earlier. April's improvement was led by a five per cent growth in manufacturing from a year earlier, much improved on a 1.8 per cent drop in March.