The HSBC flash PMI for June rises to 50.8 from May's final read of 49.4. Expectations for the print were 49.7.
Both JPMorgan and Barclays boosted estimates for Q2 GDP growth after the number, JPMorgan to 7.2% from 6.8% and Barclays to 7.4% from 7.2%.
“It is a very good number,” says Credit Suisse's Dong Tao. “It is a surprise, too, as most people are focusing on infrastructure investment and the property market.” He nevertheless leaves his Q2 GDP growth forecast at 7.3%
Stocks were not buoyed by the news as Shanghai slipped 0.1% and Hong Kong 1.7%.