Due to China's size, analysts follow indexes of several different stock markets, including the Hang Seng Index, or HSI; the Shanghai SE Composite Index, or SHCOMP; the Shanghai Shenzhen CSI 300 Index; Shenzhen SE Composite Index; and the Taiwan Stock Exchange Corporation weighted index, or TSEC. The main data reports commonly used to assess the overall economy of China include the HSBC Manufacturing Purchasing Managers Index and figures from the National Bureau of Statistics, or NBS and The Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development, or OECD.

The Hang Seng Index is weighted by market capitalization and includes the 40 largest companies traded on the Hong Kong Stock Exchange. This index is most specifically indicative of market trends and companies in Hong Kong. The Shanghai SE Composite Index is derived from a Paasche-weighted composite price index of Chinese stocks, which measures relative prices overall and is weighted by quantities sold.

The Shanghai Shenzhen CSI 300 Index includes the 300 A-share stocks traded on the Shanghai and Shenzhen stock exchanges and is taken as indicative of trends in both of those markets. The Shenzhen SE Composite Index is an index weighted by market capitalization that tracks the performance of both A-share and B-share stocks traded on the Shenzhen Stock Exchange. The Taiwan Stock Exchange Corporation weighted index is an indicator comprised of stocks traded on the Taiwan Stock Exchange, or TWSE, based on market capitalization; the highest weighted stocks have by far the most significant effect on the reading of the entire index.

Analysts attempting to track China’s economy commonly follow figures from China's National Bureau of Statistics even though its accuracy is often questioned. The NBS measures gross domestic product, or GDP, through three sectors: agriculture; construction and manufacturing; and services. The OECD is a Paris-based group that provides a monthly Composite Leading Indicator, or CLI, for China’s economy, designed to provide clues as to whether there is basic economic growth or a slowing down. The HSBC Manufacturing Purchasing Managers Index, also reported monthly, is strictly focused on the manufacturing sector of China's economy.