The Chinese government has promised more financial support to struggling small businesses. The measures include requiring banks to lend more to small businesses and allowing small businesses to issue more bonds while paying less tax, according to a meeting chaired by premier Wen Jiabao. But the government will crack down on the rapidly growing unregulated informal loans known as "shadow lending" as underground lenders pool money from affluent firms or individuals seeking high returns.

China exported $169.67 billion worth of goods and imported $155.16 billion worth of goods in September, up 17.1% and 20.9% year on year respectively, customs figures show. During the first nine months, exports totaled $1.39 trillion and imports totaled $1.29 trillion, up 22.7% and 26.7% respectively from the same period a year ago. The nation's trade surplus for this year is expected to decline slightly to $170 billion compared to last year.

China's entrepreneur confidence index dipped to 129.4 in 3Q 2011, marking the first time it was below 130 in six consecutive quarters, according to the National Bureau of Statistics. The overall business climate index was 133.4 in 3Q 2011, down 2.2 points from the previous quarter.

China has 90% of its population, or 1.28 billion people, covered by basic public healthcare, according to the cabinet's healthcare office.

Mainland China had 535,000 people with at least $1 million in net assets, according to a joint report by Merrill Lynch Wealth Management and Capgemini. China's rich population had $2.66 trillion in total wealth, which did not include real estate, personal collections and other durable goods.

Loan losses at Chinese banks may climb to levels equivalent to 60% of their equity capital as real estate companies and local governments fail to repay debts, Bloomberg reported, citing Credit Suisse. Nonperforming loans will probably increase between 8% to 12% of total debt in the next few years, causing losses amounting to 40% to 60% of Chinese banks' equity.

$1 = ¥6.36

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