An index that China's leaders use to measure economic growth looks horrible

The office of China’s Premier, currently Li Keqiang, has traditionally been tasked with monitoring the economy.

And in the past, Li Keqiang has said openly that he doesn’t necessarily use GDP to track how fast it’s growing. He uses a combination of metrics put together — a composite of electricity output, rail freight and loan growth.

Right now, all of those metrics are screaming major slow down — something like growth around 2%-4% — despite the fact that the government has said time and time again that the country’s GDP is growing at 7%.

Here’s what Premier Li’s metric looks like, via Bloomberg economist, Tom Orlik:

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