Mar 03, 2021 07:27 PM

Rise in Capital Inputs Pushes Up Caixin New Economy Index

Workers assemble photovoltaic panels on Jan. 6 in Hefei, East China’s Anhui province. Photo: VCG
Workers assemble photovoltaic panels on Jan. 6 in Hefei, East China’s Anhui province. Photo: VCG

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

The Mastercard Caixin BBD New Economy Index (NEI) came in at 28.2 last month, indicating that new economy industries accounted for 28.2% of China’s overall economic input activities. The reading was up from 27.3 in the previous month.

The NEI, which was released Tuesday, uses 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 rise in last month’s NEI was mainly due to a climb in the subindex for capital inputs, which has a 35% weighting. The subindex rose 2.3 points from January to 31.1.

The technology input subindex, which has a 25% weighting, rose 0.3 points month-on-month to 30 in February. 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%, grew by 0.1 points from the previous month to 24.6.

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 energy efficiency and environmental protection industry became the largest contributor in February, making up 10.3 percentage points of the NEI reading and jumping up a spot after being the second largest contributor the previous month. The advanced materials industry saw the fastest growth in ranking, rising to fifth position last month from eighth in January and contributing 1.6 percentage points to the reading.

The average monthly entry-level salary in new economy industries, based on data compiled from online career and recruitment websites, rose to 12,278 yuan ($1,897) in February, 97 yuan higher 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 Guo Yingzhe ( and editor Joshua Dummer (

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