China proposes tighter bond markets leverage rules rules after defaults | Fin24
 
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China proposes tighter bond markets leverage rules rules after defaults

Sep 12 2016 08:23

Chinese investors monitor stock prices at a brokerage house in Beijing after world markets were rocked by Britain's unexpected vote. (Mark Schiefelbein, AP)

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Hong Kong - China has proposed measures to tighten leverage rules in the onshore bond market, highlighting concern that investors’ borrowings are overextended after a series of defaults.

The China Securities Depository and Clearing Corporation said a note investor’s outstanding repurchase contracts shouldn’t exceed 70% of debt holdings in the person’s account, according to one of two statements posted on the clearing house’s website on Friday.

If an investor uses a security rated AA or AA+ as collateral, the amount shouldn’t be more than 10% of the bond’s total issuance, said the statement. The CSDC is seeking public opinions on the proposed regulations, it said.

Chinese regulators have sought to cut leverage in the bond market after at least 18 notes defaulted so far this year, already exceeding the tally for 2015.
 
The outstanding amount of repurchase agreements in China’s interbank market, used by debt traders to amplify their buying power, declined 1.8% in August to 8.5trn yuan ($1.3trn) from July. Still, that’s 37% higher than the level a year earlier.

"Deleveraging is the major focus for bond regulators and will continue to be so in the medium term," analyst Li Junjiang at Hua Chuang Securities Company wrote in a report on Monday.

The other statement said authorities will give a 3 to 6-month transition period after the new rules are officially announced.

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