China inflation at 4.2 pct in November

By the Associated Press | December 8, 2011 | 9:00 PM EST

SHANGHAI (AP) — China reports its inflation rate fell to a lower than expected 4.2 percent in November, paving the way for authorities to further ease credit to support growth.

The National Bureau of Statistics said Friday that falling food prices and a high base from a year earlier helped to bring inflation down from 5.5 percent in October.

The decline gives China's leaders the leeway to ease policies that were imposed to cool an overheated economy but recently have fanned fears growth might be stifled at a time when hopes are pinned on a robust China to help offset the malaise in Europe and the U.S.