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China's central bank is widely expected to keep unchanged the borrowing costs on its medium-term policy loans for the sixth consecutive month on Friday, a Reuters survey showed. Aggressive global monetary tightening and higher domestic inflationary pressure have limited room for further easing, and analysts and traders believe China's central bank is poised to steadily normalise its monetary policy after June data indicated the economy had started bottoming out.
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The International Monetary Fund agreed to a bailout of Pakistan, providing a financial lifeline as emerging markets strain under pressure from a global price shock rippling out from the war in Ukraine, the Wall Street Journal reported. The IMF said in a statement late Wednesday it would provide Pakistan with $4 billion over the next year, starting with an initial $1.2 billion, once its board formally approves the agreement worked out with Pakistani officials over weeks of negotiations.
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Chinese exports to the rest of the world grew strongly in June as trade picked up following the easing of pandemic lockdowns and logistics bottlenecks in its ports, the Wall Street Journal reported. Still, economists say the trade bounce is unlikely to last, as rate increases by the U.S. Federal Reserve and other central banks to cool inflation weigh on global growth. Chinese exports rose 17.9% in June compared with a year earlier, China’s General Administration of Customs said Wednesday.
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Financial regulators in central China’s Henan and Anhui provinces have promised to give some bank customers some of their deposits back after a protest over their frozen accounts Sunday turned violent, the Associated Press reported. In statements issued late Monday, officials said customers with deposits of 50,000 yuan (about $7,400) or less would be reimbursed. They said others with larger bank balances would get their money back at a later, unspecified date.
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An investment vehicle has taken full ownership of Tsinghua Unigroup Co. Ltd., concluding a bankruptcy reorganization plan the Chinese semiconductor conglomerate unveiled last year to deal with its debt crisis, CaixingGlobal.com reported. Tsinghua Unigroup has updated its business registration materials to show that Beijing Zhiguangxin Holding Co. Ltd. now owns 100% of the company, according to an exchange filing published on Monday. Zhiguangxin was created in November 2021 by a consortium led by Wise Road Capital Ltd. and Beijing Jianguang Asset Management Co. Ltd.
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Commodity investors looking to China to reverse the rout in global metals markets may be disappointed, with Beijing unable to deliver the kind of investment splurge that powered past bull markets, Bloomberg News reported. Base metals had their worst quarter since 2008 in the three months to June, and the retreat deepened in July. Copper plunged briefly below $7,500 a ton in intraday trading last week, its lowest since late 2020, and is down about 29% from a March record. Iron ore is down about a third from its highest this year, and aluminum is about 40% lower.
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Distressed Hong Kong property tycoon Pan Sutong was told by the city’s high court to go bankrupt, marking another blow to the former billionaire, Bloomberg News reported. The court ordered Pan to unwind his holding company, Silver Starlight Ltd, after he and the firm failed to pay creditors including China Citic Bank Corp HK$8 billion (US$1 billion) that was due in 2019, according to a court filing Friday. A representative for Pan said on Monday he is appealing the order.
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U.S. Treasury Secretary Janet Yellen and Japanese Finance Minister Shunichi Suzuki agreed on Tuesday to work together to tackle rising prices of food and energy, as well as volatility in currency markets, exacerbated by Russia's war in Ukraine, Reuters reported. They said that the war had raised exchange rate volatility, which could pose adverse implications for economic and financial stability, and pledged to cooperate "as appropriate" on currency issues.
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China Evergrande Group suffered its first rejection from local creditors to extend a bond payment, a development that may result in a landmark onshore default and encourage investors to take a tougher stance against other developers battered by the nation’s property debt crisis, Bloomberg News reported. Holders of a puttable yuan-denominated bond from the firm’s main onshore unit Hengda Real Estate Group Co. rejected a plan to further extend payment past a July 8 deadline by six months, according to a Shenzhen stock exchange filing Monday.
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A financial scandal in central China has touched depositors across the country, some of whom placed their life savings in four rural banks offering high rates of return, then found their funds frozen as investigators examined allegations of widespread fraud, the New York Times reported. When the bank customers began showing up in person to demand their money, the authorities in the city of Zhengzhou tried to use health code apps meant to prevent the spread of Covid-19 to prevent them from traveling. The city retreated after a backlash, and several officials were punished.
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