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China

Private sector credit in China is approaching an historic crisis level

Credit is the oil that lubricates the engine of an economy. For this reason, economists watch credit statistics closely, in order to assess the sustainability of growth. If credit isn’t growing, it suggests households and firms aren’t confident enough in their respective outlooks to borrow and invest. If credit grows too quickly, it could result in financial and macroeconomic instability – hist…

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China Renminbi: the USD $50,000 question

Last week, in line with expectations, China announced the renewal of the $50,000 limit of dollar purchases by individuals. What’s changed however is that the foreign exchange commission (SAFE) has tightened the scrutiny on the foreign exchange purchases. Applicants are now required to detail the purpose behind their transactions in order to ensure that the purchase is for “suitable purposes” (e…

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10 years of the M&G Bond Vigilantes blog. A new book and fundraising for Cancer Research UK.

Today is the 10th anniversary of the Bond Vigilantes blog.  Here’s a look back at the incredible changes to bond markets and monetary policy that we’ve been through over that decade.  Also today we are launching our new book (the difficult second album) in support of Cancer Research UK.  There’s a link to our Just Giving page at the bottom if you like what we do and can spare a few quid.

My fi…

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It’s Halloween. Here are some scary charts.

The financial world is a scary place. Debt, disinflation and deteriorating growth have plagued investors over the past year, plunging bond yields into negative territory in a number of countries. Perhaps most frighteningly, it is now eight years since the financial crisis and central banks in the developed world continue to employ an ultra-easy monetary policy stance. With government bond marke…

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China’s rising domestic bond defaults could spell offshore bond market rout

Chaori Solar and Baoding Tianwei will forever remain in the history of China’s bond market. In March 2014 the former became the first defaulter in the country’s onshore bond market whilst the latter turned out to be the first state-owned enterprise (SOE) default in China in April 2015. Since then, 24 other bond defaults occurred in the country, the majority of which in the manufacturing, metals…

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Explaining the collapse in global inflation rates – step forward China

We’ve been worried for years about the prospect of a sharp slowdown in China and the knock on implications for those countries and companies that have grown reliant on a strong China over the last decade, namely commodity exporters, some emerging markets, and particularly emerging market commodity exporters (eg see If China’s economy rebalances and growth slows, as it surely must, then who’s sc…

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The Chinese corporate bond market – a video

I was in Hong Kong a couple of weeks ago to find out more about the Chinese corporate bond market. To start with it’s huge, and growing rapidly. But it comes with some well-known challenges – the large weighting towards property debt, the lack of information about issuers (ratings tend to be done only by the domestic ratings agency), and perhaps most worryingly the issue of structural subordina…

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China research trip – A look at the Chinese property market and shadow banking sector

There is a lot of debate surrounding the future of China’s economy. There are the pessimists, who will cite the inevitable collapse of a debt-powered housing bubble.  There are others that say these concerns are overblown and that despite slowing, China is still the world’s second largest economy and its growth rate is far superior than anything seen in the developed world.

From time to time we…

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Happy Halloween. It’s time for some scary charts.

Halloween is around the corner and that can only mean one thing… scary chart time. Every year around this time, we highlight economic variables and statistics that could give central bankers nightmares. If stuff like non-performing loans, bad forecasts and big numbers scare you then it is probably time to turn off your computer screen and forget you ever saw this blog. The following is not for …

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Is China really growing at 7.5%? Not according to Citigroup’s ‘Li Keqiang index’

Say what you like about controversial whistleblowing website WikiLeaks and its embattled founder Julian Assange, but the organisation has lifted the lid on a number of rather glorious indiscretions alongside the more serious leak of military secrets that it has become notorious for.

One such nugget to be revealed was how Li Keqiang – now Chinese premier, but at the time the lesser known head of…

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