Results 201–250 of 491 found.
China for Sale?
In recent years, some China watchers have been wondering where the “smart money” is going? How telling are the real estate transactions of the region’s tycoons? And do concerns still exist over the growth in loans to the corporate sector? Matthews Asia’s CIO Robert Horrocks, PhD, explores.
The Coming Chinese Crackup?
Prominent China scholar David Shambaugh has turned bearish on the Middle Kingdom, which offers us the chance to review our own thinking about China’s prospects. As head of the China Policy Program at The George Washington University, Shambaugh is a respected analyst of Chinese Communist Party affairs, so his WSJ op-ed, “The Coming Chinese Crackup,” has received much attention. This issue of Sinology explores how Shambaugh’s view now is an about face from his prior analyses, and why his current arguments may be flawed.
Enjoying the Shade
As commentator Cherian George has said: “The legacy passed down to today’s Singaporeans isn’t one of random opportunism…There is nothing accidental about it.” Singapore’s first prime minister, Lee Kuan Yew, took charge of the city-state, transformed and drove it forward in the span of just a few decades. This week Matthews Asia pays tribute to this “giant of history.”
Key Questions for China Investors in 2015—Part III
In this final installment of a three-part Sinology series, Andy Rothman, Matthews Asia Investment Strategist, answers the question: is China’s property market heading for a crash? He also discusses what he believes are the biggest long-term risks to growth and stability—an absence of the rule of law and trusted institutions.
China’s New Generation of Entrepreneurs II
China has long been perceived to be a breeding ground for business copycats, and has struggled with rampant intellectual piracy. Many businesses there have indeed been founded based on business models that originated in the U.S. or Europe. But what’s been overlooked in recent years is China’s rising “innovation machine.” More favorable government policies toward R&D have helped. This month, Asia Insight takes a look at developments in China’s grassroots-level entrepreneurship.
One Cheer for India: Hip, Hip but no Hooray?
There has been a sense of optimism lately over India’s place in the world, and its markets demonstrated some enthusiasm over the seemingly good chemistry between U.S. President Barack Obama and Prime Minister Narendra Modi. But should investors beware of chasing price momentum?
Key Questions for China Investors in 2015
China raises many questions for investors. Last year, for example, GDP growth slowed to 7.4% from 7.7%, but China still accounted for almost one-third of global growth. Is this a healthy economy or an impending disaster? In the first of a three-part Sinology series, Andy Rothman, Matthews Asia Investment Strategist, addresses some key investor concerns.
Is Your China Glass Half Empty or Half Full?
It's been well-noted that China's 2014 GDP growth was the slowest in 24 years. But following 7.7% growth for the prior two years, 7.4% doesn't feel like a huge slump. And because the base was so much bigger, the incremental increase in the size of China's economy last year was 100% bigger than the increase at a much faster growth rate a decade ago. What are other important perspectives on China these days? Andy Rothman, Matthews Asia Investment Strategist, explores in this issue of Sinology.
Occupy Wall Street in Qing Dynasty, China
What if a banker's family could be taken as slaves to repay losses arising from the banker's malfeasance? This may seem extreme now but it was part of a system that existed 200 years ago in a China's desolate Shanxi region near Mongolia. This week, Gerald Hwang, CFA, writes about this surprising birthplace for a banking system that served elite citizens and the treasury of the Qing dynasty.
Shades of APEC Blue
During last year's Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation summit, Beijing revealed stunning blue skies to replace its normally smog-choked atmosphere?a result of intentional government closings of factories and roads. Producing "APEC blue" as it came to be called was a complicated and expensive task. Asia Weekly explores such initiatives in China.
Structural Reforms in Asia
The global investment community continues to deliberate about the impact of quantitative easing stemming from Europe, and more recently from Japan, as a means to revive domestic demand. Meanwhile, several Asian economies are embarking on a different kind of stimulus, aimed at boosting long-term productivity and investment spending, through structural changes to the underlying economies.
China's One-Child Policy
Last November, Chinas Communist Party announced that it would relax its famed one-child policyone of the most draconian examples of government social engineering ever seen. This is a significant political move, as it represents the Partys decision to withdraw from its citizens bedrooms, restoring a key element of personal freedom that should help rebuild peoples trust in the Party. But what some observers may not realize is that the steepest fall in Chinas total fertility rate (the average number of live births per woman) actually came be
Asia's Deepening Capital Markets
The drivers of economic growth, the region's small- and medium-sized enterprises, are finally gaining access to capital through alternative funding sources outside of just banks. Retail investors are accessing increasingly diverse products in which to store their savings and build wealth. Institutions are demanding long-dated assets to match their liabilities? Are we finally seeing more stable local demand in Asia's local capital markets?
Reconsidering Asia's Currencies
The Asian Financial Crisis of 1997-1998 looms like a ghost over any attention to Asian currency risk. But what new considerations are needed now? Given the robust performance of the regions currencies since 1999, Portfolio Manager Gerald Hwang, CFA, explores this topic in a modern context that takes into account the diverse monetary systems, business cycles and development stages of Asias economies.
A New Breed of Robotics
Are collaborative robotsindustrial robots made to better work alongside humanslikely to be well-received in the market? How feasible is a car made from a 3D printer? This week Portfolio Manager Kenichi Amaki discusses his findings from the International Manufacturing Technology Show in Chicago.
China: Decelerating but Still Healthy
GDP growth will be just above 7% this year, and slightly slower next year. Despite the negative media headlines, there are no signs of impending doom and Andy Rothman, Matthews Asia Investment Strategist, expects the property market to stabilize in the coming quarters. Strong growth in income and retail sales means China remains the worlds best consumption story.
China has long been accused of protectionist policies that restrict access to many markets.Recently, this has garnered more press attention. But has China really become more confrontational with U.S. business? In todays world, what exactly is protectionism, and who are these protections meant to benefit? This month Asia Insight explores.
Twenty years ago, Paul Matthews decided to launch two Asia ex-Japan mutual funds in the U.S. and create what is today the Matthews Asia Funds. One was a core Asia ex-Japan growth fund with a mid-capitalization bias. The other fund was a unique portfolio with a focus on Asian convertible bonds. Thus began the journey of the Matthews Pacific Tiger and the Matthews Asian Growth and Income Funds.
Awakening Japan Inc.
Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe's first two "arrows" of his expansionary fiscal policies have done well to curb deflation. Now, investors are concerned about Japan's so called "third arrow"the country's growth strategy. Can credible structural reform be implemented to remove impediments to its growth?
The reversal of Japan's equity markets so far this year, have led investors to wonder, "Is Abenomics working?" There are hundreds of components that comprise this economic plan, and among the recent successes has been job creation. However, macroeconomic statistics point to some emerging near-term challenges, including still-muted wage growth. This month Kenichi Amaki takes a look at both current pressures and progress in Japan.
Understanding China's Property Market
One of the biggest misconceptions about Chinas property market is that most buyers are speculators. In fact, the residential market is driven by owner-occupiers, and even many poor Chinese are homeowners; China is a global leader in homeownership with urban ownership rates at 89%. The boom days may be over, but fundamental demand remains healthy. New home prices rose at an average annual pace of 9% over the last eight years, but nominal urban income rose 13% per year. Communist Party leaders do not appear too worried about property; theyve taken only modest steps to support the m
Tennis star Li Na exemplifies China's newfound entrepreneurial spirit.
After advancing to her first grand slam semifinals, Peng Shuai is China's newest late-career surprise at the U.S. Open. Her compatriot, tennis star Li Na, was the first Chinese player to claim a grand slam singles title, and her success has bolstered the sport's popularity back home in recent years. Both players were among the handful of pioneers to break from the country's state-sponsored teams to take greater control of their futures. This week Patricia Huang writes about China's newfound entrepreneurial spirit.
Assessing Corporate Credit Risk in Asia
Investing in foreign markets requires a constant questioning of many long-held assumptions that underpin traditional security analysis. This issue of Asia Insight is the first in a series of commentaries to explore the fixed income themes of credit, currencies and interest rates. Given the complexities of Asias fixed income markets, we will examine the many considerations that investors need to take into account to fully appreciate the inherent risks of investing in this market.
Ready to Board the "Through Train?"
What is the significance of the soon-to-be rolled out ShanghaiHong Kong Connect, also known as the "through train?" This pilot program is designed to provide mutual access for equity investors between the Shanghai and Hong Kong exchanges. What will be the impact? While incremental, this could be an important step toward opening China's capital account and aiding in the liberalization of China's currency.
Important Reform Progress
Last week's announcement that the Communist Party will reform the hukou, or household registration system, is an important first step toward reducing the contradictions and conflicts in Chinese society. Migrant workers were primarily responsible for China's rapid economic growth, and today account for the majority of the manufacturing and construction workforce.
Kicking the Habit in Korea
Walk the streets of Seouls central business district, and you will still likely see smokers congregating in a few designated areasnarrow alleys between buildings, sending up smoke like chimneys. But even that is seen less and less these days as government officials crack down on public smoking. The next phase of Koreas anti-smoking crusade may involve further taxing its comparatively cheap tobacco products.
Consumption and Services Deliver Healthy Growth
Three interesting economic trends, each relevant to investors, are clear from Chinas first half macro data. First, economic growth has stabilized at a healthy pace despite a weak property sector. Second, driven by strong income growth, China remains the worlds best consumption story. Third, rebalancing continues, with consumption accounting for a larger share of GDP growth than investment, and with the services sector bigger than manufacturing and construction.
Anatomy of a Moat
At Matthews, we often talk about investing in quality companies with economic moats. We believe that these are the entities best placed to succeed over the long term in Asia. As Warren Buffett has noted, investors should seek businesses with economic castles protected by unbreachable moats. It is these moats that enable a company to survive and thrive as decades pass, creating economic value along the way by generating returns on capital ahead of their cost of capital. But what exactly is an economic moat?
Understanding Chinese Volatility
Sinology by Andy Rothman is a publication designed to provide investors with a framework for developing a deeper understanding of China and its economy. The focus will be on discussing the longer-term trends that are taking place in the country and their impact on the global economy. Rising volatility in China is a consequence of economic modernization and should not be feared by long-term investors.
Indonesia: Hope for Change
On Wednesday, Indonesia went to the polls to elect its seventh president. Unofficial results predict Joko Widodo, or Jokowi, to be the winner in a very tight race with rival Prabowo Subianto. Widely considered a man of the people, Jokowi came from humble beginnings as a furniture salesman. Although still lacking in experience on the national stage, his leadership is expected to be a stark contrast from Prabowos likely authoritarian style.
Harnessing Solar in China
China has revised its solar energy targets several times in recent years. This year, it has set even more aggressive targets for solar deployment. But it still has a long way to go before large-scale adoption is possible. This week, Teresa Kong writes about her visit to a small town outside of Beijing to see a Greenpeace solar project that is encouraging households and enterprises to consider going green. What are the barriers to smooth implementation?
The Rise of E-Commerce in Asia
Its no surprise that Asiahome to two of the worlds most populous countriesholds great potential for e-commerce. Much of this growth has been driven by the fact that e-commerce, particularly in India and China, has helped serve as a bridge between what people want and what people can get offline. This is especially true for those who live outside major urban areas.
Attractions of a "Walled Garden"
Developments in free trade and a nurturing of open policies with relatively few barriers have helped Asia prosper for several decades now. But a restrictive walled garden environment, with tightly regulated market access, has nurtured Chinas Internet sector and helped its firms dominate in such areas as online search, games, news, e-commerce, social networking and videos. This week Vivek Tanneeru explores a study in contrasts between the Internet sectors of China and India, the worlds two most populous nations.
Is China Still Competitive?
Investment Strategist Andy Rothman recently moved to San Francisco from Shanghai, and has experienced a bit of sticker shock. This week he reflects upon China's ability to remain competitive. What does a visit to his favorite neighborhood noodle shop in China reveal about the country's macroeconomy?
Ties that Bind
It's been almost three years since A-di first moved in with my relatives in Taiwan to work as a caretaker for my ailing grandmother. A college graduate from Indonesia with a reserved demeanor and an endearing smile, A-di, or Di Di as my family sometimes calls her, was found through an agency that places migrant workers in jobs abroad. Like her sister, a factory worker in Taiwan, she regularly sends a portion of her roughly US$550 monthly pay back home to her parents in West Java.
South Korea's Sewol ferry disaster in April has not only been one of the country's most tragic events in recent memory, it is also one that is leaving an indelible mark on Korean society. The incident claimed hundreds of young lives, led to a public outpouring of anger, capital punishment charges and several key resignations, including that of the Prime Minister.
Online Upstarts Challenge Chinese Banks
Chinese banks have long operated under a protective environment in which deposit and lending rates have been managed in a rather tight band by the central bank. One advantage of these controls for the banks has been fixed net interest rate margins. But Chinas traditional state-owned banks have been pressured recently to try to keep depositors from seeking the higher yield products now offered by online Chinese financing firms.
India: Counting Efficiently
Indias massive election processinvolving more than 1 million polling stations and 800 million eligible votershas just drawn to a close. Despite being a poor country with annual GDP per capita on the lower end of Asian economies (at US$1,527), it is home to some of the worlds best IT and generic pharmaceutical companies. Electronic voting is one illustration of the dichotomies that are present in the rapidly changing nation. This weeks Asia Weekly explores the hurdles and the technology used to manage the worlds biggest democratic election exercise.
Down Under: Commodities to Consumption
Ever since China's demand for commodities intensified around 1999, its increased reliance on imported energy and minerals has underpinned Australia's boom in the natural resources industry. Naturally, as China's import growth has recently slowed, materials and energy sector firms in both Australia and New Zealand have grown cautious about their business prospects.
The Flaws and Potential of Asia's SOEs
Asian governments own a large amount of productive assets in the form of state-owned enterprises (SOEs). These firms are typically in strategic industries of national interest, but among the broader investor community they are often viewed negatively, marked by reputations for inefficiency and potential conflicts of interest. This month Asia Insight explores the challenges that face SOEs and possible models that could be positive for business.
Pinning Hopes on the 'Chosen One'
, I would caution against expectations of a quick fix or a fixation over the short term. As in much of the rest of Asia, India and Indonesia are attempting to tackle their issues and this makes us optimistic for the future. We look forward to an environment of better governance that is critical for both social and economic progress.
Why China's A-Shares Matter Now
Although we often receive questions on mainland China?s A-share equities, which trade on the Shanghai and Shenzhen Stock Exchanges, we currently invest in Chinese equities primarily via Hong Kong-listed companies and also by way of U.S.-listed Chinese firms. China?s domestic A-share market remains largely closed to foreign institutional investors. The only way for foreigners to participate in this market is to enroll in China?s Qualified Foreign Institutional Investor (QFII) program or invest via a manager who has a quota in this program.
Pakistan?Reputation and Reality
I have been spending an increasing amount of time in ?frontier? Asian countries, exploring such fascinating locales as Mongolia and Myanmar. But only recently did I make my first trip to Pakistan. It is a country that has long piqued my interest and was a last, unexplored frontier for me. Through the years, we have debated the issues of safety and law and order there. For many in the West, the mention of Pakistan instills some fears, and many governments continue to warn their citizens to defer all non-essential travel to the country.
Asia's E-Commerce Trends
On a recent research trip, I went to Beijing, Hong Kong, Tokyo and Melbourne and spoke with Internet companies in industries as diverse as automotives, travel and real estate. I also met with several e-commerce companies with varying Internet penetration rates. As growth rates for new Internet users across parts of Asia level off, comparing these firms offered me an interesting glimpse into the potential opportunities and challenges facing the region's newer Internet firms.
China's Evolving Health Care Landscape
China has begun a long-term transformation of its health care industry. Much of this industry is still fragmented and in the early stages of consolidation. China?s top 10 pharmaceutical companies, for example, account for a combined market share of approximately 20% versus more than 60% in the U.S.
An Exhaustive Debate
Australia, which is among the largest polluters per capita in the developed world, is exploring ways to reduce its greenhouse gas emissions and has set a target for reducing emissions at 5% below 2000 levels by 2020. One of its current initiatives, the carbon pricing mechanism often referred to as the carbon tax requires polluters to pay an amount proportional to the carbon dioxide equivalent emitted during a given year.
Results 201–250 of 491 found.