China's economic growth will be largely stable in the third quarter as the impact from a stock market plunge will be limited, the National Bureau of Statistics said today. 

Bureau spokesman Sheng Laiyun also defended the accuracy of Chinese data - amid widespread scepticism.

He said that the 7% growth pace reported for the first half was "generally in line with" changes in the country's power consumption, rail freight and bank lending in that period. 

Chinese officials have been trying to reassure global markets that Beijing is able to manage the world's second-largest economy.

This comes after a shock devaluation of the yuan and a stock market plunge fanned fears of a sharp growth slowdown. 

Sheng said China's economic growth in the third quarter not derivate much from the 7% annual pace Beijing reported for the second quarter. 

"Judging from indicators in July and August, we feel that the economic trend is still stable, there may be some deviation, up or down, but it won't be big," he told a briefing. 

China's economic growth remains within a "reasonable range" and the government will be able to achieve its annual growth target of "around" 7% this year, despite some downward pressures, Sheng said. 

A run of weak data, including factory output and investment, showed the economy may have lost further momentum inthe third quarter, raising the possibility that full-year growth rate may fall below 7%. 

Sheng said his "personal view" was that full-year growth between 6.5% and 7.5% would be considered as "around" 7%.
             
The bureau is due to publish third-quarter GDP data on October 19. 

Sheng also said that China's survey-based unemployment rate in August stood at around 5.1%. 

Global investors and policymakers are on edge over China after the US Federal Reserve a week ago held off from raising interest rates, saying it was unsure if international problems, and China's slowdown in particular, will hurt the US recovery. 

An interest rate hike in the US will have only limited impact on China, Sheng said. 

He said China's economic slowdown was partly due to weaker global demand and expectations of the US rate rise have contributed to the global financial market volatility. 

"The US should not exaggerate the impact of China's growth slowdown on the global economy," Sheng said.