China Film’s opening week follows bad IPO script

August 15, 2016

Shares in China's biggest film distributor have more than doubled in their first week of trading. Never mind that ticket sales are falling across China. Artificially low prices and curbs on new issues mean that post-IPO performance is often divorced from fundamentals.

China proves fast learner of painful market lesson

January 7, 2016

It ditched a stock-market circuit breaker days after its introduction. Quite right: the mechanism did more to stir concern about pent-up selling pressures than to calm markets. The speed with which China made this volte-face bodes well for its integration into global markets.

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’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.

Wobbly stock markets are in thrall to central banks

March 11, 2015

Performance this year reflects likely monetary policy. The euro zone is set to ease: equities are strong and insiders are selling down stakes in Zalando, JCDecaux and others at a record clip. The U.S. market is weaker as tightening nears. Dollar-exposed Asian bourses struggle.

Rampant market fear clarifies global divide

October 15, 2014

A slump in 10-year U.S. Treasury yields and the evaporation of this year’s stock gains augur poorly for the Fed’s bond-buying exit. Yet the domestic economy has been improving. Slowing growth elsewhere presents the bigger worry. America’s central bank can’t do much about that.

S&P 500 at 2,000 invites “new normal” thinking

August 26, 2014

A price-to-earnings ratio under 20 is only moderately above average, but U.S. earnings are at a peak relative to GDP. Adjust them to the long-term norm and the U.S. benchmark would be a third lower. Cheap money is still buoying stocks, but such new paradigms usually don’t last.

Plunging markets reflect ugly political paralysis

August 4, 2011

Thursday's market plunge reflects, as much as anything, an ugly political paralysis.

Latest rout a reminder recovery will be a slog

August 5, 2011

Contrary to the chatter, slumping financial markets aren't a repeat of 2008.

Asian rally ignores looming risks to growth

January 20, 2012

Markets have rebounded as investors look past a rocky first half to the shower of stimulus they hope will offset a fall in exports and credit in the second half. That’s risky, as governments might disappoint. While stocks look cheap in many cases, it’s for good reason.