The Canadian Press - ONLINE EDITION

China's inflation eases in April, giving government more room to stimulate slowing economy

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BEIJING, China - China's inflation eased in April, giving the government more leeway if needed to stimulate the slowing economy.

Data on Friday showed consumer prices rose 1.8 per cent over a year earlier, down from March's 2.4 per cent increase. The rise in politically sensitive food prices eased to 2.3 per cent from the previous month's 4.1 per cent.

Lower inflation gives Beijing more room for interest rate cuts or other moves to stimulate the economy after growth declined to 7.4 per cent in the latest quarter.

Chinese leaders have ruled out more stimulus. But in a sign of concern over possible job losses, Beijing launched a mini-stimulus in March based on higher spending on building railways and other public works.

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