China: Signals From Dim Sum Bonds

Lior Alkalay - Contributor

Over the past three years, a dark cloud has been looming large in China—a massive debt bubble. It seems that, with each bit of good news, whether it’s GDP growth hitting 6.9% for the second quarter in a row, exports climbing to 7.2% Year on Year or Retail Sales surging by 10.4%, the dark cloud of a looming debt crisis grows darker and more menacing. So, when investors suddenly find their appetite whetted for Offshore Chinese debt, one should sit up and take notice.

Chinese Offshore RMB bonds, amusingly nicknamed Dim Sum bonds, are relatively new in the market, existing only since 2007. The Dim Sums’ appeal is, that they trade on offshore markets, rather than in mainland China, thereby allowing investors to buy Chinese debt without the risk of interference from Chinese regulators. As a result, the performance of Dim Sum bonds reflects the sentiment of Chinese debt more accurately. Continue reading "China: Signals From Dim Sum Bonds"

Copper Could Face Strong Headwinds From China and Australia

Aibek Burabayev - Contributor - Metals

Copper topped the ranks at the end of last year and moved north to the middle of February without breaking any serious resistance peaking at $2.8230. Then the price drifted lower, closer to the area of the December 2016 low at $2.4480 as projected in my previous update. Copper has now bounced higher and I would like to share with you some new data, which could change my outlook for the metal.

I would like to start from Chinese data as they are the top importer of the metal in the world. China’s copper import dropped almost 20% in 1Q of 2017 according to the Chinese customs statistics and this is not supporting the pricing information. Below are two charts to show you more headwinds from China.

Chart 1. Copper Vs Chinese GDP Growth Rate (Quarterly)

Chinese GDP vs. Copper
Chart courtesy of

The Chinese economy (left scale, blue) advanced only 1.3 percent in the 1Q of 2017, following a 1.7 percent growth in the previous three months and missing market estimates of a 1.6 percent growth. It has been the weakest expansion since the 1st quarter of 2016. GDP Growth Rate in China averaged 1.84 percent from 2010 until 2017. Continue reading "Copper Could Face Strong Headwinds From China and Australia"