For the first time since October 2012, HSBC’s China PMI (Flash) printed at a sub-50 level (49.6) missing expectations (50.4) quite notably. This is the worst two-month drop in 17 months. This is problematic for the PBoC who are being arbitraged left, right, and center and know that any stimulus will merely serve to exacerbate the problems they face (as we noted here that China simply cannot function with ‘moderate’ growth). Every one of the main index’s 11 sub-indices is signaling ‘problems’ – from slower rates of output, slower new orders, employment dropping at a faster rate, stocks rising, and output prices falling. As HSBC notes, “The cooling manufacturing activities in May reflected slower domestic demand and ongoing external headwinds. A sequential slowdown is likely in the middle of 2Q, casting downside risk to China’s fragile growth recovery.” Of course, none of this should come as any surprise to ZH readers – as we noted here, Chinese power consumption grew at its slowest rate since May 2009.