China's stock market boom expected in 2014Dec 27, 2013
The Chinese Academy of Social Sciences (CASS) has said there is a strong possibility that the country's stock market make dramatic gains next year when the government reopens the market for IPOs. Although there will be challenges, the CASS said in a report that a dramatic rise in the stock market could happen next year, resembling that of 1999 in many ways. Within two months from mid-May in 1999, the benchmark Shanghai Composite Index increased from around 1,100 to more than 1,600. With the relaunch of IPOs next year striking rises should be expected, experts said.
China's Internet users hit 632 million in JuneJul 22, 2014
China had 632 million Internet users as of the end of June while 527 million Chinese citizens use their smartphones to access the web, the China Internet Network Information Centre has announced. China's Internet users grew by 14 million this year from a year ago, the centre said. The centre added that while overall Internet users grew at about 2.3% in the space of half a year, the number of mobile surfers jumped by 5.4%, suggesting that many first-time web surfers in China access the net using their gadgets.
Huarong gets USD2bn investment offerJul 22, 2014
China Huarong Asset Management, a bad loan manager in China, is reportedly nearing a deal to accept a USD2bn stake purchase by investors, which include Goldman Sachs and Warburg Pincus. The investors are offering to buy up to 20% stake in China Huarong as part of their efforts to enter into the country's profitable business of bad loan management. According to Reuters, sources said that Huarong is planning to sell the stake to strategic investors ahead of an eventual IPO and seven investors are likely to sign an agreement over the next month.
Real estate plays great influence on China's economyJul 22, 2014
Zhu Baoliang, the head of the State Information Centre's economic forecast department, said China's property sector continues to play a great influence on the country's economic health. While China's economy has stabilised after registering a 7.4% growth in H1 2014, the property sector remained a concern, he said. Zhu added that any major problems in the country's real estate industry will surely have a great impact on China's economy.
China Mobile to build 500,000 4G base stationsJul 22, 2014
China Mobile announced that they will open 500,000 new 4G roaming services and open in 50 countries more where Chinese tourists frequently visit. China Mobile VP Huang Wenlin said that their company's services now extend to Hong Kong, Japan, South Korea, Singapore, Taiwan, Brazil, and the United States. He added that their customers can access 4G services by way of a new 4G USIM card without having to get a new number or to register again.
IMAX to add 19 more theatres in ChinaJul 22, 2014
IMAX Corp and Shanghai Film Corp have struck a deal to launch 19 new movie theatres in mainland China. The new movie houses will be operational in H2 next year. IMAX CEO Richard Gelfond said that their new project with Shanghai Films follows the new agreement it made in April, when IMAX committed to sell a 20% stake in its business in the country to China Media Capital and FountainVest Partners, who would pay USD40m each for 10% of IMAX's stocks next year.
China is still biggest exporter to Vietnam in H1Jul 22, 2014
Despite political and territorial problems with each other, China is still the biggest exporter of major products to Vietnam in H1 this year. Vietnam imported steel, fabrics, machinery, tools and accessories from China, the General Department of Vietnam Customs revealed on 21 July. The total amount of products that Vietnam bought from China has reached around USD3.62bn — a 25.8% increase year-on-year.
Huawei, Robert Bosch, Xilinx sign tech dealJul 22, 2014
China's Huawei Technologies Co Ltd made its initial equity investment in the British technology industry by signing a deal with Germany's Robert Bosch Venture Capital GmbH and US-based Xilinx Inc. The three firms jointly invested USD26.2m in Bristol-based XMOS Ltd, a semiconductor company. Huawei set a revenue target of USD70bn in four years' time — a yearly growth of 10% per annum.
Chinese regulators shut down local meat supplierJul 22, 2014
The Shanghai City government has shut down Shanghai Husi Food Co Ltd for allegedly selling spoiled meat to restaurants that include KFC and McDonald's. The food production factory is a unit of Chicago-based OSI Group, which was allegedly providing expired beef and chicken products to the fast food chains. A Shanghai TV station first came out with allegations on 20 July, saying that Shanghai Husi workers included spoiled meat with fresh products and tried to mislead McDonald's quality inspectors.
WH Group seeks to raise USD2bn in Hong Kong IPOJul 22, 2014
China's WH Group Ltd, the world's biggest pork company, is making its second attempt this year to go public by launching a fixed price IPO in Hong Kong on 23 July. The company aims to raise over USD2bn by selling shares at HKD6.20 each. WH Group will use the fund to repay the debt it incurred when it paid USD7.1bn to acquire US pork producer Smithfield International.
Foreign investors rush to buy China’s A-sharesJul 22, 2014
China's decision to allow more countries to invest in the mainland securities and bond markets prompted licensed foreign investors to rush in buying blue-chip renminbi-denominated A shares on the Shanghai and Shenzhen markets. Analysts said the influx of capital from licensed overseas investors reflected their optimism for growth prospects of the A share market, though performance of the market has been sluggish this year. Foreign investors are eyeing the growth potential of A shares as China expands its Renminbi Qualified Foreign Institutional Investor (RQFII) program to include more countries.
Trade between China, ASEAN up 4.8%Jul 22, 2014
The Ministry of Commerce (MOC) announced that trade between China and the Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN) went up 4.8% year-on-year to reach USD220.69bn in H1 2014. Investment between China and ASEAN hit USD120bn at the end of June this year, with USD80bn from ASEAN and USD40bn from China. Among ASEAN members, Singapore has continued to lead in investing in China with USD7.2bn in investment last year, said the MOC.
China's telecom giants team upJul 21, 2014
China's three State-owned telecom giants - China Mobile, China Unicom and China Telecom - established a JV company to share infrastructure and save on operational costs. The company, named China Communications Facilities Services, has registered capital of Rmb10bn (USD1.62bn). The JV is expected to reduce unnecessary construction of iron towers and related telecom facilities and save investment of Rmb30bn (USD4.86bn) in the sector in the next five years, according to company Chairman Liu Aili.
China's hedge fund industry poised to be one of world's largestJul 21, 2014
The regional head of the CFA Institute said the Chinese hedge fund industry has the potential to become one of the world's largest. China's hedge fund market, currently valued at about USD40bn, is already Asia's largest. According to Paul Smith, Asia-Pacific head of CFA Institute, a global association of investment professionals, the Chinese hedge fund industry is growing very rapidly that it will soon be driving the global hedge fund industry for the coming years. China's burgeoning hedge fund industry has the potential to rival that of the US. Smith, however, stressed that not many investors focus on China's hedge fund industry because it is entirely domestic at the moment.
PBOC minimises interference in currency marketJul 21, 2014
The People's Bank of China, the country's central bank, announced that it has cut down its heavy intrusion into China’s currency market. Chinese companies, including banks, have been holding on to their dollar reserves because capital inflows into the country slowed down. This is seen as the result of the PBOC allowing China’s official currency, the renminbi, fall from January to April this year.
Tesla Model S has software security defectsJul 21, 2014
Qihoo 360 Internet security expert Lin Wei said that computer-system flaws in US-based electric-car manufacturer Tesla's new Model S render it vulnerable to hackers. Lin added that these could allow hackers to control parts of the car by remote access when it is on the road. Lin also said that they have advised Tesla to fix the security flaws which include the remote access control of the car’s doors and windows and on identifying the car’s location.
China, Argentina ink multi-billion financing, currency-swap dealsJul 21, 2014
China and Argentina signed multibillion-dollar infrastructure-financing and currency-swap contracts when Chinese President Xi Jinping visited Buenos Aires on the third week of July. The two countries signed 20 deals, including a Rmb70bn (USD11bn) currency swap between their central banks. Analysts said that the agreements are putting President Cristina Kirchner's administration in a good light amidst problems with recession and inflation, but they cautioned that these won’t give much relief to the depleted foreign-currency reserves of Argentina.
Yum, McDonald's stop buying meat from supplier in ChinaJul 21, 2014
US-based fast food chains Yum Brands Inc and McDonald's Corp decided to suspend meat purchases in China from a Shanghai-based but US-controlled supplier that is being investigated for allegedly selling spoiled beef and chicken products. According to Yum, it stopped getting meat supply from Shanghai Husi Food Co, while McDonald's did the same. Shanghai Husi is owned by the OSI Group based in Aurora, Illinois.
Sany could act further vs US controlsJul 21, 2014
China-based machinery-maker Sany Group could take more action against the US government’s attempts to hinder its wind farms projects acquisition. A US federal appeals court decided that Washington violated the rights of Ralls Corp, which is owned by two executives of Sany Group, when it turned down the firm's bid to buy four wind farms in Oregon. Sany will pursue its intention to acquire the wind farms, said Sany board member Xiang Wenbo, even if Obama appeals the court’s decision or try to reach a deal out of court.
Chinese firms’ government-aided IPOs get impressive resultsJul 21, 2014
Chinese IPOs so far in 2014 have been particularly successful for investors, with some gaining as much as 70% in the days following their launch. All of the 58 IPOs that have debuted in the Shanghai and Shenzhen stock markets this year went up by the 44% allowable limits on initial trading, and 57 of these gained an average 24% more over the following five days – the 58th only launched on 18 July. However, according to analysis from the Wall Street Journal, such gains owe much to activities by the regulator, who by shutting down the IPO market for 14 months until the start of this year, created significant pent up demand. The China Securities Regulatory Commission also said last week that it would limit the number of IPOs for June-December 2014 to approximately 100 to prevent oversupply. At present there are still 637 companies waiting for approval.
Direct Wuhan-Osaka flight launchedJul 21, 2014
Travel time from Wuhan in China to Osaka in Japan will be cut by three hours after Spring Airlines launched a direct air route between the two cities. The direct flight cut travel time to three hours from a previous six hours. The 180-seat Airbus A320 aircraft flies the route every Tuesday, Thursday, Friday and Sunday, according to Spring Airlines. The new route will help Wuhan become an international aviation hub, bridging it with northeast Asia, said Zhu Xueqing, deputy general manager.
SOE reform is credit positiveJul 21, 2014
Global rating agency Moody's said reform of China's six big State-owned enterprises (SOEs) is credit positive, calling it a prudent, yet concrete, step toward broader reform. Moody's positive rating came after the State-owned Assets Supervision and Administration Commission (SASAC) announced that six big SOEs will pilot reforms in ownership, management and supervision, including selectively setting up investment companies and a "board of directors" system. Companies involved in this round of reform are the State Development & Investment Corporation, China National Cereals, Oils and Foodstuffs Corporation, China National Building Materials Group, China Energy Conservation and Environmental Protection Group, Xinxing Cathay International Group and China National Pharmaceutical Group.
Alibaba accuses media outlet of blackmailJul 21, 2014
Chinese e-commerce giant Alibaba announced that it has filed a police report against a media institution that allegedly tried to blackmail the company ahead of its multi-billion dollar listing in the United States. In a statement released to the press, Alibaba said that a media outlet, which it did not identify, had asked for USD300,000 in exchange for not publishing a negative report against the company. According to Xinhua, sources have speculated that the report was about a Guangzhou-based semi-monthly business magazine. The city police have accepted the case filed by Alibaba against the said media outlet.
Microsoft’s massive job cuts to affect Beijing workersJul 18, 2014
Microsoft Corp announced that it will cut 18,000 jobs this year, 14% of its total workforce. Among those that will be affected by the job cuts are workers in Beijing, as Stephen Elop, the former CEO of Nokia who now runs Microsoft's devices unit, said phone engineering work in the Chinese capital will be reduced. Phone manufacturing will now be focused in Hanoi, Vietnam, with some production to continue in Beijing and Dongguan, China. Microsoft Chief Executive Officer Satya Nadella kicked off one of the largest layoffs in tech history, with hopes to reshape the aging PC industry titan into a nimbler rival to Apple and Google,
Fosun seeks out bigger targets in foreign dealsJul 18, 2014Aspiring to be the Berkshire Hathaway of China hasn’t been easy for the Fosun Group, which tested the overseas waters by buying up minimal stakes in firms like Club Mediterranee four years ago. Now, Fosun is targeting bigger companies, such as its USD1.4bn agreement with Caixa Seguros e Saude, the biggest insurance group in Portugal, owned by state bank Caixa Geral de Depositos. Fosun also bought out Chase Manhattan Plaza in New York for USD$725m. However, Fosun was beaten by a local rival for LIG Insurance Co of South Korea in June.