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在线翻译:
szdaily -> Markets
Bond market lures foreign investors
    2018-February-5  08:53    Shenzhen Daily

CHINA’S efforts to open up its domestic bond market, the world’s third largest, are starting to pay off by pulling in foreign investors drawn to relatively high yields in a newly stable currency.

It is a crucial step to balancing pressures on capital flows in and out of China, and if sustained, it would make it less risky for policymakers to relax controls on domestic firms and households taking money out of the country.

It also helps China narrow the economical status as the world’s second largest and its currency’s marginal role in the global financial system.

China pulled 346 billion yuan (US$55 billion) in foreign funds into bonds in 2017, central bank data show. About one-third of the flows since the start of July came via the bond connect program launched that month, Bank of China (Hong Kong) Ltd. said.

While the total inflow is a fraction of the US$337 billion in foreign net purchases of U.S. Treasuries for 2017 through November, it marks a 41 percent surge from 2016.

The acceleration will pick up this year to 700 billion yuan, Deutsche Bank AG predicts.

Foreigners still hold less than 2 percent of China’s domestic debt. By comparison, foreigners hold 11 percent of Japan’s debt.

“We are definitely going to add allocation to Chinese onshore bonds this year — China has become an attractive opportunity,” said David Tan, chief investment officer of Asia Pacific fixed income at Allianz Global Investors Singapore Ltd. “The deleveraging has increased yields and nobody talks about yuan depreciation any more.”

Sustained inflows are potentially a game changer for China’s bond market. One hope is foreign investors will apply greater scrutiny to credit quality and demand more transparency on financial records, helping establish wider differentiation between stronger and weaker borrowers. They could also improve liquidity in onshore bonds, the bulk of which are held by banks and rarely traded compared with other major markets.

Liu Linan, a rates and currency strategist at Deutsche Bank in Hong Kong, sees all of those dynamics “boosting the long-term prospects of the yuan’s internationalization.” She said that “China is accelerating its financial integration with the global market.”

The chance to buy three-year government notes at around 3.63 percent yield in China, versus 2.31 percent on comparable Treasuries and a negative 0.30 percent in Germany, is enough to tempt many. (SD-Agencies)

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