We document that since December 2015 the People’s Bank of China (PBC) has followed a “two-pillar” exchange rate policy that aims to achieve both stability and flexibility. Based on a no-arbitrage model and options price data we estimate the credibility of the policy as well as its impact on the RMB/USD exchange rate. The model was able to correctly forecast the end of the two-pillar policy in May 2017.
In sharp contrast with the market-and-disclosure based system in the US, IPOs in China are subject to strict regulatory rationing and control. We investigate the pricing implications of China’s IPO regulations for its publicly listed companies. We find that these regulations will give rise to significant market frictions with economic consequences for the prices, returns, and even investment decisions of China’s publicly listed companies.
China’s stock market imposes various trading restrictions such as daily price limits and trading suspension rules, which are intended to stabilize the market during turmoil. During China’s stock market crash in the summer of 2015, these trading restrictions made many highly valued stocks non-tradable and consequently caused mutual funds facing redemption pressure or with precautious concerns to sell other tradable stocks, exacerbating their price drops.
This paper develops a framework for China’s rebalancing, reviews past progress, and discusses medium-term prospects. China has advanced well in reducing its excessive external surplus and moving towards consumption and services, while still lagging behind in reducing credit reliance, environmental pollution, and income inequality. Going forward, the economy will continue rebalancing in many dimensions, while credit will remain China’s Achilles heel unless decisive corporate restructuring and SOE reforms are implemented.
We identify bank loans to China’s local government financing vehicles and find that 1.7% of the loans that matured during the sample period failed to make the due payments. The LGFV loan default rate is much higher for commercial banks than for the China Development Bank, which provides more comprehensive financing for local governments than typical commercial banks. This selective default pattern is weaker during the ¥4-trillion stimulus period but stronger after 2010 when commercial banks exited the LGFV market.