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    Gavekal Research

    Beijing’s Peruvian Copper Play

    Earlier this month a consortium of Chinese state-owned companies agreed to buy a huge Peruvian copper mining project from Glencore Xstrata for US$5.9bn. The new Chinese owners will need to invest another US$2.4bn to bring the project on stream by its scheduled start date in 2015, bringing their total investment to US$8.3bn. Is this massive deal yet another example of China Inc. overpaying for resource assets? Probably not: tight global supplies...

    0
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    Gavekal Dragonomics

    What's Going On With The RMB?

    Even though the renminbi fell steeply in the first quarter, sliding 2.7% against the US dollar, capital continued to flow heavily into China. Balance of payments data published last Friday show China’s current account surplus for the period was just US$7.3bn. The capital account, however, notched up a surplus of US$118.3bn.

    3
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    Gavekal Research

    Beijing's Peruvian Copper Play

    Earlier this month a consortium of Chinese state-owned companies agreed to buy a huge Peruvian copper mining project from Glencore Xstrata for US$5.9bn. The new Chinese owners will need to invest another US$2.4bn to bring the project on stream by its scheduled start date in 2015, bringing their total investment to US$8.3bn. Is this massive deal yet another example of China Inc. overpaying for resource assets? Probably not: tight global supplies...

    0
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    Fathom China

    Profile: UnionPay: Breaking The Monopoly

    The way that billions of people pay for things is in flux across the world. No sooner had consumers grown accustomed to using bank cards instead of cash than the next big thing, online payments, swept onto the scene. In China, a giant state-owned firm called China UnionPay (“UnionPay”) has long straddled most payment channels as the only authorized bank card network. UnionPay is a government-controlled cousin to Visa or MasterCard, with its logo...

    0
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    Gavekal Dragonomics

    Watch Capital Flows For The Central Bank’s Next Move

    How will China’s central bank respond to the country’s slowing growth? Speculation about the next move from the People’s Bank of China has been rising as economic indicators continue to be tepid, credit growth continues to slow and the currency remains weak. Similarly, in early 2012 GDP growth was also weak, credit was cooling and the RMB was depreciating—and shortly afterward the central bank cut banks’ reserve requirements and credit growth...

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    Gavekal Research

    5C China: Regional Growth Gets Uglier, But More Accurate

    In China, the whole is not necessarily greater than the sum of its parts; in fact it can be less. China’s provincial GDP figures are viewed skeptically because of two obvious problems: the sum of provincial GDP is often much higher than national GDP, and most provinces report GDP growth faster than the national average. In what could be a sign of higher-quality data at the local level, both of these trends are now changing: the gap between the...

    0
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    Gavekal Dragonomics

    Defaults Are Coming: Where, When And How

    In early 2014, China’s financial markets witnessed a milestone: for the first time, issuers of local, domestic-currency corporate bonds went into default. With China’s economy slowing and many debts coming due this year, these will be only the first of many defaults on corporate bonds.

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    Gavekal Research

    5C Overview: How Much More Asian Deflation?

    The latest news from Asia’s biggest economies is uninspiring. China’s growth grinds lower, and the renminbi has declined by 3% against the US dollar since January. Japan is suffering the anticipated effects of this month’s consumption tax hike, and Anatole has predicted that the BoJ will respond later this year with a fresh round of money-printing which could push USD/JPY well above its established level of 102 to the dollar.

    0
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    Gavekal Research

    Five Corners (16 April 2014)

    In the latest bi-weekly review of global economics and investment, Charles Gave explains why it still pays to run a balanced portfolio, despite the market’s rotation. Will Denyer argues that outlook for US consumption remains favorable, even though consumer cyclicals have taken a beating. François-Xavier Chauchat examines the reasons behind the euro’s persistent strength. Andrew Batson looks at Beijing’s new focus on jobs and finds the...

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    Gavekal Research

    Running The Red Queen's Race

    By reporting the relatively low figure of a 7.4% rise in first-quarter gross domestic product, down from 7.7% in the previous quarter, China has confirmed that the current pace of economic expansion is now roughly as weak as it was during previous downturns in 2008 and 2012. While the headline number was better than market expectations, and growth clearly picked up a little in March from the lows of January and February, there are worrying signs...

    0
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    Gavekal Research

    Breaking The Bad News Cycle

    Alarm bells have been ringing over China for a while, and there have been plenty of Quasimodos to sound them. With a poorly-understood “shadow financing” system that accounts for 20% of total credit, an overbuilt real estate market, deficit-ridden local governments and under-capitalized banks, China’s financial system has been looking shaky. Financial stress, along with the relative tightness of central bank policy since last May, helps explain...

    0
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    Gavekal Dragonomics

    Breaking The Mold Of Capital Markets Reform

    For more than 20 years, China has been experimenting with ways of bringing in capital from equity investors overseas. What has characterized all of its various programs, with their bewildering array of names—red chips, B shares, QFII—was extremely tight central-government control over who could participate and how large the fund flows could get. But the tie-up announced last week between the Hong Kong and Shanghai stock exchanges shows that a...

    0
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    Gavekal Research

    5C China: A Blurry Target For Job Growth

    China’s top policymakers have spent the past week preparing the public for today’s weak GDP reading—a rise of 7.4% in 1Q14—by emphasizing that as long as enough jobs are being created, it doesn’t matter if growth is a bit below the 7.5% official target. This is a laudable attempt to wean the system off its obsession with GDP numbers and get officials to focus on more relevant indicators.

    0
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    Gavekal Dragonomics

    The Rocky Road To Market Rates

    The race is on. Central bank governor Zhou Xiaochuan said last month that he expects the liberalization of interest rates on bank deposits to be complete within two years—the first time such a clear timetable has been given for the final step in the deregulation of Chinese interest rates. Financial reform in China has usually been slow and gradual, so the two-year timeframe is a bold commitment.

    2
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    Gavekal Research

    In Laos, All Roads Lead To China

    Two thousand years ago, in the days of the Roman Empire, it was said that “All roads lead to Rome.” Rome’s might was built on the back of metaled roads constructed by an army of 180,000 legionnaires, who pushed the expansion of the empire to its geographic limits. China’s expansion over its modern-day borders is primarily economic, not military. But as China’s massive domestic road-building program extends over its borders into Southeast and...

    0
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    Gavekal Research

    In Laos, All Roads Lead To China

    Two thousand years ago, in the days of the Roman Empire, it was said that “All roads lead to Rome.” Rome’s might was built on the back of metaled roads constructed by an army of 180,000 legionnaires, who pushed the expansion of the empire to its geographic limits. China’s expansion over its modern-day borders is primarily economic, not military. But as China’s massive domestic road-building program extends over its borders into Southeast and...

    0
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    Gavekal Research

    No Bridgehead Too Far In China’s Expanding Empire

    For centuries, China’s borders expanded and contracted as dynasties rose and fell. With its star in the ascendant, the Chinese empire is expanding once more. This expansion is based on economic power—trade and investment—not military conquest. But it will nevertheless reshape the geopolitics of Asia.

    0
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    Gavekal Research

    No Bridgehead Too Far In China’s Expanding Empire

    For centuries, China’s borders expanded and contracted as dynasties rose and fell. With its star in the ascendant, the Chinese empire is expanding once more. This expansion is based on economic power—trade and investment—not military conquest. But it will nevertheless reshape the geopolitics of Asia.

    0
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    Gavekal Research

    London Seminar April 2014 - Anatole, Arthur, Louis & Francois

    We held our spring seminar in London on April 2, with Anatole, Arthur, Louis and Francois offering their take on the state of the world economy and financial markets. Audio recordings of their discussions are available below:

    0
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    Gavekal Dragonomics

    China: Support Not Stimulus

    Last night China's State Council unveiled a plan to support growth through additional spending on railways and low cost housing, and via tax relief for small businesses. The offshore market leapt on the news as a signal of changing policy direction. Following recent economic data that appeared to undermine Premier Li Keqiang’s chances of achieving his declared goal of 7.5% growth this year, there were rising expectations for some sort of...

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