Good Morning. Welcome to The Wire’s daily news roundup. Each day, our staff gathers the top China business, finance, and economics headlines from a selection of the world’s leading news organizations.
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The Wall Street Journal
- One of the Year’s Worst Short Bets Defies Scathing Reports and an SEC Investigation — No stock has been more heavily attacked by activist short sellers this year than GSX Techedu, but the New York-listed Chinese tutoring company has so far come out on top.
- China Taps the Brakes on a Yuan Rally — Banks no longer need to deposit 20% of their sales when buying and selling what are called currency forwards denominated in U.S. dollars for clients.
- U.S.-China Trade War Gets Wrapped Up in Twist-Ties — Minnesota company’s plastic-and-wire closures—a fixture on bread bags—are at the leading edge of Washington’s tariff tiff with Beijing.
- Harvard Professor Sues School for Legal Expenses to Fight China Charges — Scientist Charles Lieber is accused of misleading the Defense Department and the National Institutes of Health about taking part in a Chinese government talent-recruitment program, while the U.S. agencies spent more than $15 million to fund his research group.
- Pakistan, a Close Ally of China, Blocks TikTok — The country banned TikTok for carrying what it called indecent content, making it the latest to restrict the wildly popular Chinese video-sharing app, which is also battling being blocked in the U.S.
- One Year After China Banned the NBA, Basketball Returns to Chinese TV — China Central Television, the country’s state-run broadcaster, said it would resume telecasts of National Basketball Association games in time for what could be the last game of the NBA season.
The Financial Times
- Renminbi sinks after PBoC responds to biggest rally in 15 years — China’s central bank moves to make it easier to buy foreign currencies.
- US blocks Hong Kong users from some government websites — Sites hosting economic data have been inaccessible to users in the Asian financial centre for months.
- The Great Wall (Street) of China — 2020 marks the year when Beijing finally threw open its doors to US banks despite broader Sino-American tensions.
- China stock listings on Wall Street accelerate under Trump — Chinese groups stage growing number of IPOs despite US delisting threats.
- Serbia cultivates both US and China in Balkans tug of war — Belgrade is the subject of intense courtship by Beijing and, more recently, Washington.
- Stopping the descent into a new cold war — The US and China must take steps back if history is not to repeat itself.
- China hotels: check-in time — Opportunity knocks for biggest chains but smaller operators suffer.
The New York Times
- When the U.S. and China Fight, It Is the Environment That Suffers — The Trump administration’s moves to decouple the two economies means less leverage over Beijing’s green policies.
- Exclusive: Chinese Insurance Giant Taiping Appoints New Chairman — Wang Sidong, China Taiping Insurance’s vice chairman since January 2018, will fill the vacancy left by Luo Xi, who has taken over as chair of competitor PICC.
- Cover Story: Managing China’s $1.6 Trillion Private Investment Market — Venture capital and private equity funds in China have been shrinking for three years reflecting a need for better regulatory oversight and more self-discipline.
- Car Services Provider Dida Beats Larger Rival Didi to Market — Carpooling specialist files plan for Hong Kong IPO, even as its losses swelled in the first half of 2020 during the pandemic.
South China Morning Post
- Huawei, Xiaomi top list of China’s most valuable consumer electronics companies, says Hurun report — Five of China’s 10 most valuable consumer electronics companies are smartphone makers, with Huawei Technologies taking the top spot despite US restrictions that have cut the supply of key components to the Chinese company.
- China’s central bank urges faster digital yuan roll-out as other countries begin tests — China should accelerate its efforts to launch a sovereign digital currency, elevating it as an important part of an “independent” financial infrastructure in the digital era, a top Chinese central bank official has said.
- China’s yuan rally has just started, and it is thanks to the US Federal Reserve — The yuan’s appreciation against the US dollar in recent days could be a prelude to a long rally for the Chinese currency as it is increasingly being seen as a stable source of value amid unconventional monetary policies by major central banks pushing the global financial system into uncharted territories.
- ‘A new direction’: is China shifting focus to economic opening-up in Xinjiang and Tibet? — China has signalled it may tilt its policy focus back to economic development in the politically sensitive regions of Xinjiang and Tibet, where it appears to be gaining confidence about its grip on social stability.
- China won’t follow West by easing monetary policy, says central bank chief — China will not follow Western economies by undertaking a large-scale monetary loosening, but will instead look to consumer price stability and exchange rates to help the economy recover, the central bank governor has said.
- Hong Kong firms could feel the pinch of potential US sanctions on banks, but such a move could also backfire, observers say — Hong Kong’s trading and manufacturing firms could have a more difficult time in the coming months if the United States were to impose sanctions on banks, the city’s business leaders warned on Sunday.
- China slows yuan’s rise on asset bubble concerns, signalling new battle against excessive appreciation — A decision by China’s central bank at the weekend to curb a rally in the yuan’s exchange rate signals concern over a rush of hot money fuelling an asset bubble amid heightened price risks in the country’s rapidly growing property market, according to analysts.
- US financial sanctions against China ‘suicidal’ for Washington, former Chongqing mayor Huang Qifan says — The United States is unlikely to launch a financial war against China as it would hurt itself more, outspoken former Chongqing mayor Huang Qifan said.
- Hong Kong’s home sales fizzle for a second weekend ahead of key policy address expected to boost supply of affordable homes — Hong Kong’s weekend home sales sputtered as buyers remained cautious ahead of Chief Executive Carrie Lam Cheng Yuet-ngor’s annual policy address next week, expected to increase land supply for affordable housing to rein in one of the world’s most expensive property markets.
- Guolian, Sinolink End Plan to Create $13 Billion Broker in China — Guolian Securities Co.’s effort to acquire bigger rival Sinolink Securities Co. has ended after the firms couldn’t reach terms to create a $13 billion Chinese broker in the consolidating industry.
- China’s Secret to Reaching Carbon-Neutral Goal Raises Questions — China estimates that “carbon sinks” could wipe one-third of the emissions it wants to cut. But the approach has serious challenges.
- Hong Kong Bankers Are Losing Their Jobs to China Rivals — Hong Kong’s homegrown investment bankers are rapidly losing their status as the city’s go-to dealmakers, supplanted by mainland Chinese rivals who now hold a majority of senior jobs in Asia’s biggest financial hub.
- China Bans Australian Coal Imports as Political Relations Sour — China has suspended purchases of Australian coal, according to people familiar with the order, as Beijing continues to tightly control imports of the fuel amid soured political relations with Canberra.
- Evergrande’s Top Creditors Are Reducing Loan, Bond Exposure — Several of China Evergrande Group’s largest lenders are reducing their exposure to the debt-laden developer, underscoring persistent concerns about the company’s financial strength despite its recent deal with investors to avert a cash crunch.
- ICBC’s Biggest Surge in 3 Years Bodes Well for Hong Kong Stocks — For some investors, Chinese bank shares in Hong Kong finally became cheap enough to buy.
- China Stocks Jump on Hopes Xi Will Announce Reforms in Shenzhen — China stocks climbed on optimism before President Xi Jinping’s address in the southern city of Shenzhen this week.
- China Aims to Cut All Greenhouses Gases by 2060, Researcher Says — China’s pledge to be carbon neutral by 2060 includes all greenhouses gases, not just carbon dioxide, according to one of the country’s top climate researchers.
- Chinese Electric-Car Charging Provider Eyes Mainland Listing — Chinese electric-vehicle charging equipment provider StarCharge plans to start the process for an initial public offering, just weeks after completing a Series A fundraising round.
- Chinese Companies Could Avoid Default by Selling Assets — Even as China’s companies struggle to repay their loans, some are unwilling to part with their assets.
- EVE Energy May Buy More Lithium, Cobalt Before Prices Lift — EVE Energy Co., a Chinese producer of lithium-ion batteries for electric cars to earphones, is considering plans to step up purchases of key metals amid signs prices could soon rise from recent lows.
- Chinese App Helps Users Bypass Great Firewall – Then Disappears — One Chinese app briefly gave the country’s internet users access to long-banned websites like Facebook Inc. and Google, setting off speculation about the future of Beijing’s censorship practices.
- Vanguard Returns $21 Billion in Assets to China State Funds — Vanguard Group Inc. returned about $21 billion in managed assets to government clients in China as part of a global shift to focus on low-cost funds for individual investors, according to people familiar with the matter. BlackRock Inc. and Amundi SA are being considered to manage a portion of the funds returned by Vanguard.
- China’s Insistence That Taiwan Isn’t a Country Starts Backfiring — The more China tells the world that Taiwan isn’t a country, the more Beijing’s adversaries are starting to treat it like one.
- Hong Kong IPO Boom Set to Continue, Led by Technology Companies — Hong Kong’s boom in initial public offerings is set to be prolonged as companies given a boost by the pandemic outbreak follow China’s technology giants in selling shares, the bourse’s head of listings said.
- China to Maintain ‘Normal’ Monetary Policy, PBOC Chief Says — China will maintain “normal” monetary policy for as long as possible, according to the People’s Bank of China Governor Yi Gang.
- Nissan Sept. China Sales Rise 5.1% Y/y to 141,595 Vehicles — Nissan sold 985,474 vehicles in China in the first nine months, which represent a 9.7% decline from a year ago, according to an emailed statement from the company.
- China Backs Indonesia to Become Vaccine Hub of Southeast Asia — China supports Jakarta’s efforts to become the center for vaccine production in Southeast Asia, Indonesia Coordinating Minister for Maritime Affairs and Investments Luhut Pandjaitan said after meeting Chinese Foreign Minister Wang Yi.
- Philippines, China Foreign Ministers Reaffirm Ties Amid Tensions — The Philippines and China foreign ministers reaffirmed the “continuing vitality” of their countries’ relations amid recent tensions in the South China Sea.
- Yuan’s Haven Status Won’t Stick Until China Relaxes Its Controls — When the world’s financial markets hit turbulence, could you really turn to China’s yuan as a store of value?
- Singaporean Sentenced to Prison by U.S. in China Spying Case — A Singaporean man was sentenced to 14 months in prison on Friday in a U.S. federal court after pleading guilty to acting as an illegal agent for Chinese intelligence, the U.S. Department of Justice announced.
- Chinese state firms to work with private capital to boost competitiveness — China vowed on Monday to boost the competitiveness of state companies through reforms including more cooperation with private firms and capital – while keeping a firm grip on strategic industries such as network infrastructure.
- China’s premier says ‘arduous efforts’ needed to achieve economic goals: state media — China’s premier Li Keqiang said the country needs to make arduous efforts to achieve its full-year economic goals, according to a report on Monday from state broadcaster CCTV.
- Global stocks boosted by stimulus hopes and China’s post-holiday surge — Global stocks hit five-week highs on Monday led by China’s post-holiday surge as investors bet on a steady recovery for the world’s no. 2 economy, while hopes for stimulus offset worries about rising COVID-19 cases in Europe and the United States.
- China’s Sinopec starts ethylene production at new Zhanjiang refinery — China’s Sinopec has started operation of a 800,000 tonne-per-year ethylene facility at its Zhanjiang refinery, the company said in a statement on Monday.
- China Eastern Airlines to receive $4.6 billion capital injection — China Eastern Airlines will receive a cash injection of 31 billion yuan ($4.60 billion) from four new investors as part of an equity diversification plan, the company said on Monday.
- Cadillac, Buick help GM to first China sales growth in two years — General Motors Co (GM) on Monday said continued market recovery from the COVID-19 crisis helped its China vehicle sales grow 12% on year in July-September, marking the Detroit automaker’s first Chinese quarterly sales growth in two years.
- China’s exports seen sustaining recovery in September as markets reopen: Reuters poll — China’s exports likely posted a fourth straight month of gains in September as more trading partners reopened their economies, a Reuters poll showed, while imports are also expected to have edged back into growth.
- Australian writer indicted for espionage in Beijing, says China — Detained Australian writer Yang Hengjun is accused of espionage and his case is currently being heard by a Beijing court, China’s foreign ministry spokesman said on Monday.
- China, Cambodia clinch free trade pact in under a year — China and Cambodia signed a free trade agreement on Monday, put together in under a year and aimed at slashing tariffs and boosting market access between Beijing and one of its most important Asian allies.
- China’s top climate think tanks push for more cuts to coal use & emissions: report — China’s leading climate think tanks are pushing for cuts to carbon emissions and coal use over the next five years, according to speeches and a major report China’s top experts on climate change and emissions issued on Monday.
- Standard Chartered seeks brokerage licence in mainland China: Xinhua — The Hong Kong unit of Standard Chartered has applied for a brokerage licence in mainland China, the state-backed Xinhua News Agency reported on Monday.
- Worsening Sino-U.S. ties huge risk to China’s financial network – PBOC vice head — Worsening Sino-U.S. relations present huge risks to technology supply chain security for China’s financial network, Fan Yifei, a central bank vice governor said on Monday, according to China Finance, a magazine run by the People’s Bank of China (PBOC).
- Serbia tests Chinese drones, Russian jets at major exercise — Russian-made jet fighters, helicopter gunships and tanks fired at ground targets while Chinese combat drones flew overhead on Saturday at the desolate Pester training ground in Serbia’s westernmost region in a show of revamped military power.
- Taiwan president calls for ‘meaningful dialogue’ with China — Taiwan wants to have “meaningful dialogue” with China on an equal basis, President Tsai Ing-wen said on Saturday, extending an olive branch at a time of heightened military tension with Beijing, which claims the island as sovereign Chinese territory.
- China to invest nearly $900 billion in power grids: state media — China will invest close to $900 billion in the next five years to help further develop the country’s power grids, the official Xinhua News Agency reported on Saturday.
- Chinese app allows small glimpse beyond ‘Great Firewall’ — An app launched this week in China allows access to some content on Western social media sites long banned domestically such as YouTube, marking the first product by a major Chinese tech firm that helps internet users bypass the Great Firewall.
- U.S. should try to delay IPO of China’s Ant Group, Senator Rubio says — Senator Marco Rubio, who has successfully urged the Trump administration to pursue investigations of Chinese companies, called on Friday for the U.S. government to consider options to delay an initial public offering of China’s Ant Group, the fintech arm of Chinese e-commerce giant Alibaba .
- China’s Xi says intends to deepen relations with North Korea: KCNA — In a congratulatory message to Kim Jong Un for the founding anniversary of North Korea’s ruling party, Chinese President Xi Jinping said he intends to deepen relations with Pyongyang, North Korean state media reported on Saturday.
- U.S. Treasury to push COVID stimulus, China debt participation at IMF meeting: official — The U.S. Treasury will press countries to keep up coronavirus stimulus during International Monetary Fund and World Bank annual meetings next week and urge China to fully participate in debt relief for poor countries, a senior Treasury official said.
- CNBC: 70% of video game revenue in world’s top market comes from China’s smaller cities, report finds — Video games are booming in China’s smaller cities, with citizens there accounting for more than half of revenue nationally, according to a recent report by Niko Partners.
- Foreign Policy: China’s Belt and Road Initiative Is a Mess, Not a Master Plan — Beijing’s foreign investments are often money-losing and driven by recipients’ own agendas.