Feb 02, 2021 04:34 PM

Fall in Capital Inputs Pushes Caixin New Economy Index Lower

Workers check photovoltaic panels on Jan. 6 at a factory of a smart-solar panel-maker in Hefei, East China’s Anhui province. Photo: VCG
Workers check photovoltaic panels on Jan. 6 at a factory of a smart-solar panel-maker in Hefei, East China’s Anhui province. Photo: VCG

The contribution of high value-added industries such as advanced materials and new, cleaner energy to China’s total economic inputs fell in January due primarily to a decline in capital investment, a Caixin index showed.

The Mastercard Caixin BBD New Economy Index (NEI) came in at 27.3 last month, indicating that new economy industries accounted for 27.3% of China’s overall economic input activities. The reading was down from 28.1 in the previous month.

January’s NEI, which was released Tuesday, aims to make use of big data to track the size of China’s nascent industries. The index measures labor, capital and technology inputs in 10 emerging industries relative to those used by all industries.

The drop in last month’s NEI was mainly due to a decline in the subindex for capital inputs, which has a 35% weighting. The subindex fell 2.6 points from December to 28.8.

The technology input subindex, which has a 25% weighting, rose 0.4 points to 29.7. This gauge measures the number of research personnel recruited by the tracked industries, and the number of inventions they have created and patents they have obtained.

The subindex for labor inputs, which has a weighting of 40%, remained largely flat from the previous month at 24.5.

The NEI, launched in March 2016, defines a new economy industry as one that is human capital- and technology-intensive but asset-light, experiences sustainable and rapid growth, and is a strategic new industry encouraged by the government.

Of the 10 tracked industries, the new information technology industry remained the largest contributor in January, making up 6.7 percentage points of the NEI reading. The energy efficiency and environmental protection industry ranked second, contributing 6.3 percentage points.

The average monthly entry-level salary in new economy industries, based on data compiled from online career and recruitment websites, fell to 12,181 yuan ($1,883) in January, 344 yuan lower than the month before.

The monthly NEI reports are written by Caixin Data Technology Co. Ltd. and Chinese big-data research firm BBD, in collaboration with the National School of Development at Peking University.

Contact reporter Tang Ziyi (

Read more about Caixin’s economic indexes.

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