Workers walk past a branch of China Construction Bank in Beijing

China's industrial production and retail sales grew in April but failed to top analysts' forecasts, underscoring sluggish growth momentum in the world's second-biggest economy.

China's industrial production rose to 9.3% year-on-year in April from the 8.9% rise recorded in March, showed data from the National Bureau of Statistics. This compares with analysts' expectation of 9.4% rise.

Retail sales inched up 12.8% annually in April, which was in line with the forecasts and is against the 12.6% rise recorded in March.

Meanwhile, urban fixed asset investment, a measure of construction and infrastructure spending, rose to 20.6% in the first four months of the year compared with the prediction of 21% growth. Investments were up 20.9% in the first quarter.

The data failed to cheer the Chinese markets as Shanghai Composite Index lost nearly 0.2% in the afternoon trade.

Earlier, data showed that consumer price inflation rose to 2.4% in April, still hovering below the government target of 3.5%, while producer prices fell for the 14<sup>th consecutive month.

Food prices rose 4% on an annual basis in April, compared to a 2.7% rise in March, while producer prices declined by 2.6% in the month, compared to a 1.9% decline in March due to a pullback in raw material prices.

Inflation is expected to rise further on increased consumer demand amid a slow economic recovery and the central bank is likely to go for a rate cut given the tepid growth.

The subdued data across the board has prompted analysts to lower their estimates for China's growth this year to the range of 7.6% to 7.8%.