China plans to merge 3 bad debt asset managers with its largest sovereign wealth fund, state media reports

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China plans to merge three of its largest state-owned bad debt asset managers with its China Investment Corp sovereign fund as part of a plan to reform institutions, the official Xinhua news agency cited unidentified sources as saying in a report on Sunday.

The plan to put China Cinda Asset Management, China Orient Asset Management and China Great Wall Asset Management under the jurisdiction of one of the world’s largest sovereign wealth funds by assets will happen “in the near future,” Xinhua added, without providing any further details.

This announcement, along with another by China’s securities regulator on Sunday that it’s suspending the lending of restricted shares starting Monday, underscores Beijing’s pledge last week to strengthen the “inherent stability” of its capital markets and improve market confidence.

Beijing’s actions follow a stock market rout amid burgeoning financial risks stemming from a debt crisis in its real estate sector. Last week, China’s central bank announced its largest cut in mandatory cash reserves for banks since 2021. It also announced a fresh policy mandate aimed at easing the cash crunch for Chinese developers.

The property market slumped after Beijing cracked down on developers’ high reliance on debt for growth in 2020, weighing on consumer growth and broader growth in the world’s second-largest economy.

China’s real estate troubles are closely intertwined with local government finances since they typically relied on land sales to developers for a significant portion of revenue.

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