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China
Le Xia
Chief Economist
The China Unit is made up of a team of economists based in Hong Kong. The team closely monitors developments in the largest economies of the region, including Greater China, India, Japan, Indonesia and the Philippines. In addition, the Chine Unit is responsible for analyzing trends related to Asia’s financial systems and assessing the risks faced by these economies. The team also conducts studies on important political, geopolitical and social issues in the region from a strategic perspective. The unit’s responsible is Le Xia.

Latest Publications

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China’s corporate sector: Deleveraging or re-leveraging?

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In face of intensifying growth headwinds and private enterprises woes, the authorities have shifted their policy stance from "deleveraging" to "stabilizing firm's leverage". Stimulating growth and controlling debt at the same time is a challenging task, the authorities could achieve a balanced objective if appropriate policy initiatives are to be implemented.

Available in English

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China | Trump-Xi meeting declares a trade war truce, paving way for further talks

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The US-China relationship seems to get a favourable turn after a highly anticipated dinner on last Saturday between Trump and Xi on the sidelines of the G20 summit in Argentina. In particular, both sides agreed to keep the trade war from escalating with a promise to halt the imposition of new tariffs for 90 days and intensify their negotiations in the following months.

Available in English

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China | RMB exchange rate outlook under the trade war threat

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RMB exchange rate is on its second wave of depreciation since the devaluation in August 2015. Escalating trade war, economic slowdown and divergence of US and China’s monetary policy contributed to the depreciation. The authorities' attitude has been from “ride-on-the-wave” to “lean-against-the-wind” and RMB outlook is hinging on the meeting between Trump and Xi in G20.

Available in English

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China | Easing measures stabilized growth while headwinds persist

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A batch of October economic indicators is announced today, together with the credit data, suggesting that the recent policy easing helped to stabilize economic growth. However, headwinds from the unsettled trade war with the US and domestic deleveraging still weigh on growth. As such, we expect monetary and fiscal policy to become more pro-growth in the rest of the year.

Available in English

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A note of optimism for economic prospects

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Policy recipe offered by Xi at import expo will help to solve trade disputes and rebalance China's economy. The China International Import Expo started in Shanghai on Nov 5, and the inaugural event, announced more than a year ago, stands in stark contrast to the escalated trade tension between China and the United States.

Available in Spanish, English

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China Economic Outlook. Fourth quarter 2018

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2018 Q3 GDP moderated to 6.5% y/y, down from the previous reading at 6.7% y/y and the market consensus. This suggests the economy further moderated amid the escalation of trade war and domestic deleveraging. The growth slowdown has prompted the authorities to reverse their previous neutral stance of policy to pro-growth so as to offset domestic and external headwinds.

Available in English

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China | Growth slowdown in Q3 calls for more easing measures

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Sep economic indicators, together with Q3 GDP, were reported today. Q3 GDP growth slowed down to 6.5% y/y, compared with 6.7% y/y in the previous quarter and 6.6% of the market consensus. This suggests the economy further moderated amid the escalation of trade war and domestic deleveraging. We expect monetary and fiscal policy to become more pro-growth in the rest of year.

Available in English

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China | Peering into the local government debt: rising risks call for prompt actions

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We attempt to answer the questions regarding China’s local government debt: (i) what’s the total size of the local government debt; (ii) why the local government debt has grown to today’s level despite the central government’s clamping-down efforts; (iii) whether the risks are still manageable; and (iv) how can the authorities solve this local government debt problem.

Available in English

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China | Stable Sentiment towards Financial Vulnerabilities - 3Q18

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The China Vulnerability Sentiment Index remained stable through Q3 despite the escalated trade disputes with the US and growth slowdown. By component, the SOE index remained vulnerable. Both Housing Bubble and Shadow banking index still held well. The Exchange Rate Index plummeted before recovered on the central bank’s revealed efforts to stabilize the exchange rate.

Available in English

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China | A big data approach to gauge trade-war fears in Asia

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In this watch, we examine the evolving trade-war sentiment across Asian economies using Big Data analysis.

Available in English

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Fighting an uphill battle - the overcapacity in China's steel industry

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This presentation analyzes China's overcapacity problem in the Iron & Steel industry. On top of reviewing the past (unsuccessful) efforts to eliminate overcapacity, it attempts to provide policy suggestions for the clean-up of obsolete capacity.

Available in English

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China | Recent easing measures helped to stabilize growth

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August economic indicators are announced today, suggesting the recent monetary and fiscal easing measures helped to stabilize economic growth. However, headwinds from domestic deleveraging and the escalating trade war will continue to weigh on growth. Monetary and fiscal policy to become more pro-growth although the authorities remain vigilant on financial vulnerabilities.

Available in English

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China | Growth slowdown continues

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July economic indicators are announced today, together with the previously released credit data, suggesting that growth slowdown continued. In particular, FAI, industrial production and retail sales dropped from the previous readings and below the market expectations. More easing measures of monetary policy and more pro-growth fiscal stimulus are expected in coming months.

Available in English

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What weapons does China have in the trade war?

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The trade war between China and the USA finally broke out on 6 July, when the US imposed 25% tariffs on US$34 billion worth of imports from China, to which China responded by applying the same tariff to the value of imports from the US.

Units:
Geographies:USA China

Available in Spanish, English

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China | What is our expectation of Bilateral Investment Treaty with the EU?

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Our report analyzes the current situation of the China-EU bilateral investment and investigates the contents and difficulties of BIT negotiations. We expect that the BIT between China and the EU will be a game-changer weapon to help China to end its trade war with the US. Moreover, it will also catalyze structural reforms in China and boost its domestic growth.

Available in English