China issues policies to help SMEs overcome difficulties: minister
Profits of China's major industrial firms continued to fall in the first four months of 2020, but the decline was seen to narrow amid government efforts to coordinate COVID-19 containment and economic growth, data showed Wednesday.
Profits of industrial companies with annual revenue of more than 20 million yuan (about 2.8 million U.S. dollars) totaled 1.26 trillion yuan during the January-April period, down 27.4 percent year on year, according to the National Bureau of Statistics (NBS).
The contraction narrowed from the 36.7-percent decline in the first quarter, NBS data showed.
In April alone, industrial profits edged down 4.3 percent, recovering from the 34.9-percent drop registered in March as production and sales rebounded on nationwide restoration of economic activities, NBS statistician Zhu Hong noted.
Increasing investment returns last month as well as a low comparison base last year also contributed to the improvement, Zhu added.
Despite the recovery, business profitability situation remained "not optimistic" as yet-to-recover market demand, retreating industrial prices and cost pressure would combine to weigh on profits, Zhu stressed.