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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 | Growth started to feel the pain of regulatory tightening

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After registering a stronger-than-expected performance in the first half of the year, Chinese economy started to show more signs of moderation in July, in line with our expectation. In particular, the authorities’ prudent monetary stance and stepped-up regulatory efforts to tackle a number of financial vulnerabilities seemingly have transmitted to the real economy.

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China | Will the current RMB appreciation sustainable?

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The strong performance of the RMB exchange rate in recent months has surprised the market, behind which are a confluence of factors: (i) a steep deprecation of US dollar against other major currencies; (ii) the stronger-than-expected growth momentum in China; (iii) the effective implementation of a series of measures aiming to “promote capital inflows and limit outflows”.

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China: Vulnerability sentiment boosted by solid economic recovery &clarified policy stance

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Our China Vulnerability Sentiment Index (CVSI) improved remarkably in July, in particular led by both SOE and Shadow Banking components. Meanwhile, the components of the Exchange Rate and Housing Vulnerability Index also rebounded from the previous low levels, now staying within the neighbourhood of natural level.

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China | Solid recovery continues in July

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Despite a lull of moderation in April-May, China’s economic recovery has staged a comeback at mid-year. The official manufacturing PMI in July remained in the expansionary territory at 51.4 (consensus: 51.5), although slightly below the previous strong reading at 51.7. Meanwhile, Caixin China Manufacturing PMI significantly surged to 51.1 from 50.4 in the previous month。

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China Economic Outlook. Third quarter 2017

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Notwithstanding the authorities’ stepped-up efforts to cool down the property market and curb shadow banking, Chinese economy continued its good performance in Q2 with GDP outturn at 6.9% YoY, flat with the Q1 reading and higher than the market consensus. We raise our 2017 growth forecast to tally with the official target of 6.5% from 6.3%.

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China | Growth momentum is stronger than market expectations

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2017 Q2 GDP reached 6.9% y/y, flat with Q1 outturn and higher than the market concensus of 6.8% y/y, suggesting growth momentum is stronger than expected. The strong growth momentum is reflected in a batch of economic activity indicators released today. Both surging external demand and comparatively easing credit condition in June contributed to the good performance.

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China: June PMIs indicate an stronger-than-expected growth momentum

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China’s official manufacturing PMI (released by NBS last Friday) picked up significantly to 51.7 in June from 51.2 in May, well above market expectations (Consensus: 51). Following the same trend, the Caixin China Manufacturing PMI announced today, which includes a survey sample tilting toward SMEs and exporters, increased to 50.4 in June from 49.6 in the previous month.

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China | Vulnerability sentiment deteriorates in June

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Our China Vulnerability Sentiment Index (CVSI) deteriorated in June, dragged by Housing and Exchange Rate component, which together offset a stable SOE Index and improving Shadow Banking Index. The deleveraging campaign has gained traction, with notable easing in shadow lending growth, though concerns over its effectiveness continues to undermine sentiment.

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China: Vulnerability sentiment improved notably in May

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Our China Vulnerability Sentiment Index (CVSI) improved notably in May, led by Housing, SOE and Shadow Banking components, which offset a deterioration in Exchange Rate Vulnerability Index. The improvement in CVSI reflects underlying investor confidence that macro-financial headwinds facing China still remain manageable amid policy efforts to anchor financial stability.

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China : PBOC tweaks model guiding Yuan fix to underpin financial stability

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On May 26th, the People’s Bank of China (PBOC) announced that, henceforth, it would add a ‘counter-cyclical adjustment factor’ to its model guiding daily USDCNY midpoint fixing. The tweak aims to reduce excess Yuan volatility and curb one-way bets by easing ‘herd behavior’, but risks backpedaling Yuan exchange rate regime to the one prior to the reform in August 2015.

Units:
Geographies:Asia China

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Financial deleveraging: two steps forward; one step back

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After months of persistent regulatory tightening in domestic financial markets, China’s authorities unexpectedly fine-tuned their stance of monetary prudence by injecting liquidity into the banking sector. We interpret the authorities’ strategy as “two steps forward one step back”. After the market stabilizes and absorbs their messages, they are set to leap forward again.

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Tracking chinese vulnerability in real time using Big Data

Document Number 17/13

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We develop an indicator to track vulnerability sentiment in China. In order to ensure robustness and depth, we use a combination of traditional macroeconomic and financial time series with textual analysis using Big Data techniques.The index is composed by the following dimensions: state owned enterprises; shadow banking; housing market bubble and exchange rate market.

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China | Vulnerability sentiment edging towards neutral

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Our China Vulnerability Sentiment Index (CVSI) moderated in April after improving since July 2016. The CVSI is now edging to neutral, however the components of the index show divergence. The moderation can be related to a decline in housing and FX components. The shadow banking component remained positive on a tighter monetary policy stance and macroprudential measures.

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China Economic Outlook. Second quarter 2017

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Q1 GDP edged up to 6.9% YoY, we expect 2017 annual growth rate would not deviate much from the newly set official target of around 6.5%. Prudent monetary policy and tight regulations start to effect .RMB exchange rate and foreign reserves has stabilised. Downside risks: housing bubbles ; currency depreciation; indebtedness of the corporate sector and shadow banking.

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China | Decline in foreign reserves won’t grind to a halt in 2017

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China’s foreign reserves seem to have stabilized at the beginning of the year. By decomposing the change of foreign reserves in 2016, we make projections of foreign reserves at end-2017 under two scenarios with distinct key assumptions. To avert a swift depletion of foreign reserves, the authorities need to prevent large swings in the exchange rate.

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