【英语中国】二季度全球股市差等生:中国A股

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2010-7-2 02:03

小艾摘要: The European Union's problems dominated headlines during the second quarter of the year, but it was a tumultuous three months in China's markets -- and that country's economic remodeling -- that wi ...
The European Union's problems dominated headlines during the second quarter of the year, but it was a tumultuous three months in China's markets -- and that country's economic remodeling -- that will hold greater implications for the global economy in the long term.

Chinese investors shaved 23% off the Shanghai Composite Index between April and June, a nose dive that put it at a 14-month low and left it in bear-market territory.

The Shanghai index of domestically traded 'A share' stocks -- accessible to domestic investors and a handful of overseas institutions -- finished at 2398.37, down nearly 27% so far this year, making it the weakest major stock market in Asia and one of the weakest in the world.

The Chinese stock market has declined even as the country's gross domestic product and companies' earnings grow by double digits.

The slide reflects deeper concerns among Chinese investors about several wild cards, including the effectiveness of Beijing's attempts to cool the housing market; the country's ability to sustain its strong economic growth amid rising labor costs; and the implications of a rising yuan.

Many of those fears came to the forefront in the closing days of the quarter, as investors pushed stocks down more than 7% during a six-day losing streak, driven by concerns that China won't be able to sustain its torrid growth in the second half of the year. Also worrying investors was a weak investor response to the US$23.3 billion Agricultural Bank of China Ltd. initial public offering scheduled for mid-July, which priced at a lower-than-expected range earlier this week.

Francis Cheung, a Hong Kong-based stock strategist with CLSA Asia-Pacific Markets, says he expects global investors to increase their exposure to China once it works through its current problems. But Mr. Cheung said that could take time, with downward revisions to GDP and earnings on the way and a continuing property tightening campaign that he believes Beijing is only 'midway through.'
A sustained stock-market decline could have implications beyond China's closed markets, pinching sentiment at a time when much of the world is still looking to China to lead a robust global recovery.

How the China story plays out promises to have an impact on commodities like copper that figure large in construction, currencies like the dollar and global companies that are relying on the rise of the Chinese consumer.

In the near term, some analysts think Chinese investors haven't fully priced in the myriad risks to domestic stock prices. They point to the looming threat of a nationwide property bubble and labor unrest at a number of Chinese manufacturers that some think could signal an end to China's status as the world's factory floor.

Minggao Shen, Citigroup's chief economist for greater China, said that while the country's GDP and corporate numbers in the first half of the year have been surprisingly resilient, the real challenge will be maintaining those numbers as the uncertainties pile on.

'The one word that we're urging is 'caution,'' Mr. Shen said. 'The question now that many people have, including us, is not believing this kind of fast growth can be sustained in the second half of the year.'

Mr. Shen cites the European debt crisis, the relatively weak U.S. economy and China's own attempts to wean itself off last year's stimulus plan as the biggest risks. He expects export growth to fall to below 20% a year, far below China's historical figures.

As the quarter came to a close, a new theme took center stage: the pace at which China's currency appreciates. Policy makers in mid-June said they would allow the yuan to move beyond its narrow band and trade at a more flexible exchange rate.

Analysts remain divided on how much Beijing will allow the yuan to rise and what that might mean for stocks, though investors pushed the Shanghai stock index up 3% on June 21 after Beijing's announcement.

That excitement has since given way to broader concerns about growth, as well as lingering questions about Beijing's commitment to currency flexibility.

Those on the bullish side argue that loosening the yuan's peg to the U.S. dollar will help reduce trade tensions between the U.S and China and lower the specter of protectionist tariffs on Chinese exports, while helping Beijing broaden the monetary-policy options that are at its disposal.

That could give the Chinese government more flexibility to weather future economic challenges.

The rising yuan could also boost Chinese consumers' buying power at a time when investors and governments are searching for signs of rebalancing in the Chinese and global economies.

Others take a more bearish view, arguing that a rising yuan adds more pressure to a Chinese export sector at a time when that core engine of Chinese growth is already struggling with rising wages and a weak global economy.

China's attempts to cool its overheated property markets are another source of stress. If Beijing is successful in cooling off residential prices that have skyrocketed in the past year, it would damp property investment -- which directly and indirectly accounts for about one-fourth of China's GDP.

A bursting of the bubble would drain household wealth and hurt the share prices of developers, construction companies, home-appliance makers and car companies.

Amid the uncertainty, one group of investors has been bullish: large insider shareholders of Chinese companies, who in May were net buyers of A shares for the first time in nearly two years, according to Mark Matthews, a Hong Kong-based equities strategist with Macquarie Securities.

Taken together with what he regards as the positive yuan news, Mr. Matthews says, 'I would not want to be short China at this juncture.'

今年第二季度欧盟问题占据了各大报纸的头条,但长远来说对全球经济意义更为重大的却是中国市场动荡的三个月──以及中国经济的重塑。

4-6月上证综指累计跌23%,挫至14个月低点,目前处于熊市区域。

交易A股的上证综指周三收于2398.37点,今年迄今累计跌近27%,是亚洲表现最差的主要股市,而且是全球表现最糟糕股市之一。A股仅限于中国国内投资者和少数境外机构投资。

尽管中国国内生产总值(GDP)和企业收益以两位数增长,但中国股市在下跌。

股市大跌反映中国投资者对几个不确定因素更深刻的忧虑,这几个因素包括北京方面为楼市降温举措的效果;在劳工成本上升之际,中国维持经济强劲增长的能力,以及人民币升值的影响。

在本季度的最后几天这些忧虑浮出水面,投资者在六个交易日的连续下挫中,将大盘打压下跌逾7%,因投资者担心中国不能在今年下半年维持强劲的经济成长。另外心怀疑虑的投资者对中国农业银行(Agricultural Bank of China Ltd.)规模达233亿美元的首次公开募股反应冷淡,发行计划在7月中旬,本周稍早将发行价定于低于预期的区间。

里昂证券亚太市场(CLSA Asia-Pacific Markets)驻香港股市策略师Francis Cheung说,一旦中国解决了当前的问题,预计全球投资者将增加与中国相关的投资。但他说,这还尚须时日,因GDP和企业收益在下降,而地产紧缩政策仍在持续,他认为北京方面的房地产紧缩行动远未结束。股市持续下跌的影响可能远及中国封闭的A股市场之外,在全球多数地区仍在盼望中国带领全球经济强劲复苏之时打压了市场人气。

中国故事如何演绎,对铜等在营建中起重大作用的大宗商品、美元等货币以及依赖中国消费者实力增强的全球企业将产生影响。

短期来说,一些分析师认为中国投资者还没有完全感受到中国股价的风险。他们指出全国地产泡沫和中国许多制造企业中的劳工骚乱是近在眼前的威胁,一些人认为这可能是中国世界工厂地位终结的信号。

花旗集团(Citigroup)大中华区首席经济学家沈明高说,虽然中国一季度的GDP和企业数据出人意料地坚挺,但真正的挑战将是在不确定性加剧的情况下如何保持这些数据。

沈明高说,我们呼吁的一个词就是谨慎;包括我们在内,现在很多人不相信这种快速增长能够在下半年得到维持。

沈明高认为,最大的风险在于欧洲债务危机、美国经济的相对疲弱,以及中国自己回调去年刺激计划的尝试。他预计每年出口增速将会降至20%以下,远低于历史水平。

随着二季度结束,一个新的主题,即中国货币升值的速度,站上了中心舞台。政策制定者在6月中旬说,他们将允许人民币突破窄幅波动区间,汇率将更加灵活。

北京将允许人民币升值多少,对股市意味着什么,分析界仍然没有统一意见。不过在北京出台政策后的6月21日,投资者将上证综指推高了3%。

过后,这种激动让对经济增长的担忧在更大范围内出现,对北京提高汇率灵活性的决心如何的疑问也不绝于耳。

乐观者认为,人民币盯住美元政策的放松将有助于降低中国出口产品被征保护性关税的威胁,同时有助于北京扩大可支配的货币政策选项。

这样可以使中国政府在应对将来的经济挑战时,拥有更大的灵活性。

在投资者和各国政府寻找中国和全球经济再平衡的迹象之时,人民币升值还可以提高中国消费者的购买力。

其他人则持一种更加悲观的观点,认为在中国出口行业已经面临工资上涨、全球经济疲软的情况下,人民币升值会给这个核心增长引擎添加更多压力。

中国为过热房地产市场降温的尝试,也是一种让他们感到紧张的因素。如果北京成功地冷却了去年飙升的住房价格,那将会减弱直接或间接地占据约四分之一GDP的房地产投资。

如果房地产泡沫破灭,家庭财富将会减少,开发商、建筑公司、家电和汽车生产商的股价也将下跌。

在这种不确定环境中,有一群投资者一直做多,那就是中国企业的内部大股东。麦格理证券(Macquarie Securities)驻香港股市策略师马修斯(Mark Matthews)说,5月份,这些股东在接近两年以来首次净买入A股。

马修斯把人民币方面的消息当作是利好消息,把这方面考虑在内,他说,“我不想在这个关口做空中国”。

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