ARI SHAPIRO, host:
Speaking of government rescues, China just announced a giant economic stimulus package of its own. From Shanghai, NPR's Louisa Lim has the details.
LOUISA LIM: A New Deal with Chinese characteristics is how one analyst described the massive stimulus package. And in announcing it, China talked about the need to be fast and heavy-handed. At $586 billion, analysts say this spending plan is far bigger than had been expected. This reflects the fact that China's economy is slowing faster than expected. Andy Rothman from the brokerage CLSA says China's going further than the developed economies by spending more and spending faster on its package.
Mr. ANDY ROTHMAN (Strategist, CLSA): Bigger in the sense that they're talking about spending which would be equal to as much as eight percent of Chinese GDP next year, and that compares to stimulus plans announced by the U.S. and Germany that are equal to only about one percent of their country's GDP. Faster because they can do it more quickly because they're not encumbered by the difficulties of democracy. For example, they don't have to get environmental assessments. They don't have to have local planning hearings. They can just do it.
LIM: The money will be spent on low-cost housing, social welfare, and rural infrastructure, aimed at stimulating domestic spending. And Asia's markets were delighted by the package. Shanghai's index leapt 7.3 percent, while Japan's Nikkei ended up 5.8 percent. Nonetheless, analysts still warn that China's billions are unlikely to turn around the country's economic slowdown, though they might put a floor under it. Louisa Lim, NPR News, Shanghai.
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