Economists had forecasted a surplus of $15.4 billion for China in March but the forecast was blown away by official figures which put Chinese trade at a modest deficit of $884 million. Although a deficit may initially seem bad, in China's case it is positive in that it represents a huge surge in import strength. Export growth was strong at 10 percent, relatively in line with forecasts of 10.5 percent. However, import growth surged to 14.1 percent, compared with forecasts of 5.2 percent. This huge import strength shows the growth of Chinese consumer spending and strong domestic demand; overall, it can be interpreted as a sign that the Chinese economy is gaining steam.