Breakingviews

Heathrow offers quaint lessons in infrastructure

July 1, 2015

After at least six years of heated debate, a British government-appointed panel has backed the idea of a third runway for London’s largest airport. China has built 44 new airports in that time. The UK’s deliberative approach has advantages, but now it’s time to start building.

Chinese stock markets need more than lip service

June 30, 2015

The selloff is dramatic but only affects the relatively few people who own equities. A wider risk is that a prolonged slump would slow reforms and undermine faith in China’s rulers. In the short run, overt state support may be the most effective way to avoid losing credibility.

China taxi apps speed towards subsidy showdown

June 29, 2015

Local taxi-hailing app Didi Kuaidi is raising up to $2 bln less than a month after rival Uber said it will invest $1 bln in the People’s Republic. Both are racing for market share by spending heavily on subsidies for drivers. The question is whose investors lose patience first.

Rising China: a required reading list

June 26, 2015

China has towering international influence and a huge population. It will soon be the world’s largest economy too. But it’s hard to know what makes the People’s Republic tick. Enter the Breakingviews required reading list, eight works agreeably free of “dragon” in the title.

IPO madness in China stock markets is relative

June 26, 2015

Guotai Junan shares popped 44 pct after its IPO, valuing China’s third-largest broker at $35 billion. Rivals make that look pedestrian. Such excesses are possible because China remains mostly sealed. Foreign markets courting China’s capital should hope its exuberance stays home.

Chinese banks get closer to losing training wheels

June 25, 2015

Removing an official cap on the ratio of loans to deposits should remove distortions and could boost credit. More importantly, it takes China a step nearer to freeing its domestic financial system. Then it will be up to regulators, not rules, to stop banks careering off the road.

China’s stock boom is not so different this time

June 17, 2015

Soaring share prices evoke memories of the market’s rapid rise and even swifter collapse between 2006 and 2008. Corporate reform hopes, hyperactive retail investors and faith in state support are recurring themes. The differences aren’t big enough to suggest a happier ending.

Return to China tough for American orphan stocks

June 12, 2015

Soaring home markets are prompting Chinese companies to delist from U.S. exchanges. The likes of social network Renren and data centre group 21Vianet may hope for higher valuations in China. But rigid rules make mainland listings harder. Only the unloved will attempt the journey.

MSCI lets fund managers ignore China a bit longer

June 10, 2015

The index compiler says China’s $10 trln stock markets aren’t quite ready for global benchmarks. That’s a relief for investors worried about inflated mainland valuations. But inclusion is only a matter of time. Being underweight will soon be a matter of choice, not inertia.

Focus Media sets tone for China’s shifting market

June 3, 2015

The Chinese advertising firm’s reverse listing in Shenzhen values it at $7.4 bln, twice what it was delisted for in New York two years ago. Dizzying valuations have reduced the appeal of foreign markets. For those with a taste for financial engineering, the door is now ajar.