China Loosens Grip on Corporate Bonds – Jamil Anderlini

From Financial Times:

China’s anaemic corporate bond market is set to expand exponentially after the government loosened its grip on the sector on Wednesday by introducing a new regulatory regime.

Corporate bonds are virtually non-existent in China, mostly because they are regulated by the state’s conservative and anachronistic central planning agency, the National Development and Reform Commission . The commission only allows a handful of giant state-owned enterprises to issue bonds through a limited and extremely opaque quota system. It sets the price and issue date for the bonds and requires them to be underwritten by the state’s commercial banks.

“These are not even real corporate bonds since the risk is borne by the bank not the company, making them more like bank bonds,” said Wang Chaohan, a senior bond trader at Guotai Junan Securities in Shanghai. [Full Text]

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