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    Gavekal Research

    Don't Fear The Suburbs: Understanding China's 'Ghost Towns'

    Since legendary short-seller and hedge-fund manager Jim Chanos proclaimed that China was on “a treadmill to hell,” critics of China’s reckless investment practices have waited in vain for the bubble to burst. The latest critic to reaffirm the faith is doom-monger extraordinaire Nouriel Roubini, who warned that China’s excessive investment rate could result in a financial crisis or years of anemic, Japan-style growth. Roubini cited the...

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    Gavekal Dragonomics

    DragonWeek - Counting the Empty Houses

    DragonWeek: An opinionated weekly guide to China's economic news

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    Gavekal Research

    Urbanization Special - Two Views of a Housing Boom

    Urbanization and housing markets in China

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    Gavekal Dragonomics

    DragonWeek - Local Govt Debt, Revisited

    DragonWeek: An opinionated weekly guide to China's economic news

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    Gavekal Research

    Construction Quarterly - Q2 2011

    China real estate and construction market review: June 2011

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    Gavekal Research

    Social Housing May Still Save the Day

    Over the past year, we have argued that the impact on GDP of this year’s likely slowdown in commercial housing starts would be offset by China’s ambitious social housing program. This was one of the key reasons we did not expect a “hard landing” scenario in China (see Hedges for an Unlikely Hard Landing). However, the latest figures out of the Ministry of Housing and Urban Development (Mohurd) show that 3.4mn units of social housing had begun...

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    Gavekal Research

    China’s Empty Cities & Misallocation of Capital

    According to China’s latest census (which employed 6mn people), the urban population has grown by 220mn over the past decade and now stands at 666mn out of 1.34bn. Most of that growth came from internal migration from countryside to cities. In other words, over the past decade, the equivalent of the entire populations of Russia and Germany packed up and moved somewhere else. We have thus just witnessed the largest displacement of a population...

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    Gavekal Dragonomics

    CEQ Q2 2011 - Property

    Property: A plague o' both your houses!

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    Gavekal Dragonomics

    No Room For Squares: China's Housing Supply And Demand

    China’s housing and construction boom has changed the lives of hundreds of millions of people and reshaped global commodity markets. Yet its basic drivers are surprisingly obscure. Our investigation into the fundamentals of housing supply and demand in China has yielded three key findings that shed some light on the future prospects of this boom. Namely:

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    Gavekal Research

    The RMB's Tangled Web

    Over the past two years, we have argued that while the market continues to focus on how much the RMB will revalue by, the more interesting question remains the accelerating pace of deregulation and the slow internationalization of the RMB. In that respect, the big RMB news of the past week is not the acceleration in the pace of appreciation (see chart below) but instead the news that Singapore may soon join Hong Kong in the (short!) list of...

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    Gavekal Dragonomics

    DragonWeek - Mongolian Coal Exports

    DragonWeek: An opinionated weekly guide to China's economic news

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    Gavekal Research

    Marshallian K & Hong Kong Property

    Back in the days before the big TMT bull market, many investors focused on central bank liquidity to get an idea of where asset markets would be heading. Basically, the idea was to follow broad monetary aggregates—if the M2 was rising, then asset markets would move up 12-18 months later, and vice-versa.

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    Gavekal Research

    Hong Kong’s Favourite Hedge

    With prices for shoddy apartments reaching eye-watering heights, it is hard to go out in Hong-Kong without every other conversation rapidly turning to the increasingly prohibitive price of real estate. And the main question is always how much higher can prices go? As we write, the mortgage repayment to income ratio is back on its long term moving average, highlighting that if interest rates move up from their current rock-bottom levels, the...

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    Gavekal Research

    Two Reasons the HKD Peg Will Not Go Away

    Like wine, inflation numbers for Hong Kong come in three colors, with the red (in this case property prices) far more important than either white (CPI) or rosé (PPI). Now the current acceleration in HK inflation, and the fact that Hong Kong real estate prices continue to make new highs (thereby helping make Hong Kong one of the most expensive cities to live), is not that surprising. As our friend Simon Ogus from DSG Asia puts it: “Hong Kong is...

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    Gavekal Research

    Construction Quarterly - Q1 2011

    China real estate and construction market review: March 2011

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    Gavekal Research

    The Impact of China's Social Housing Plans

    Fears are mounting that the Chinese government’s promises to supply a massive 36mn units of social housing over the next five years will trigger a collapse in housing prices. Or, alternatively, that steel and cement prices will soar on the construction roll-out, thereby decimating margins for other developers. In our view, neither fear seems justified, for several reasons.

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    Gavekal Dragonomics

    DragonWeek - Jan and Feb 2011 Data

    DragonWeek: An opinionated weekly guide to China's economic news

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    Gavekal Research

    GaveKal Daily - Introducing our 2Q Quarterly Strategy Chart Book: A Structural Turning Point for Markets?

    We would first like to offer our readers an apology: it appears that not all clients received the email notification about the publishing of our most recent Quarterly Strategy Chart Book last Friday, due to technical problem with our server. For anyone who missed it, the 2Q Quarterly is available on our website here (at 74 pages, this is a pretty hefty edition so it may take a few minutes to download).

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    Gavekal Research

    QSCB - 2Q11 - A Structural Turning Point for Markets?

    We would first like to offer our readers an apology: not only are we publishing our Quarterly Strategy Chart Book just 24 hours after the publication of our China Economic Quarterly (with can't miss articles on alternative energy, insurance, RMB deregulation, Mongolia, and the property slowdown), but this quarterly is long as well: a full 74 pages!

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    Gavekal Research

    GaveKal Daily - Behind Hong Kong's About-Face

    Most modern democracies would kill for Hong Kong’s budgetary problem, that is deciding what to do with a large fiscal surplus. Spending the money on building roads, trains or civil servants is not very practical right now as it might add fuel to a domestic inflation problem which already threatens to become problematic. For the same reason, passing on the money to poor people, or cutting taxes, was not a path the government wanted to embark on....

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