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China Market Strategy Hao Hong, · PDF file 2018. 6. 16. · Download our reports from Bloomberg: BOCM〈enter〉 27 June 2016 China Market Strategy Hao Hong, CFA [email protected]

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  • Download our reports from Bloomberg: BOCM〈enter〉

    27 June 2016

    China Market Strategy Hao Hong, CFA [email protected]

    Post Brexit: How to Trade China.

    Summary: After the epic volatility surge, assets that are most sensitive to Brexit, such as the GBP, European banks and the Hang Seng, have reflected much of the known bearish confluences near term. But even if a technical reprieve could be in store, potential USD strength and mild market sentiment despite a significant plunge suggest any oversold relief will be transient, and fraught with bouts of volatility. Hence, it will be very difficult to trade.

    Loss of direct financial holdings, further deterioration in current and capital accounts due to capital flight and weakened bilateral trade are three contagion channels from Brexit China must face. The first two are still in progress, while the third contagion is still too early to assess.

    Interventions by central banks and national team have compromised the reliability of short-term market price signals. The fact that the Shanghai Composite leads global volatility event by one year, and its cascading downfall over last year, hint that waves of volatility are yet to come. Longer term, EU and China have clearly peaked, and the RMB depreciation pressure remains as FX reserve falls. These stanch long-term trends are a force to be reckoned with, and should be the focal point for consideration. US stocks have been slow to adjust, and will continue to weigh on global markets.

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    Brexit or not, EU and China have long peaked. Significant overlapping tops. The US is next: Brexit finally roiled the market,

    leaving pundits gasping for words. Before the “Black Friday” on June 24, 2016, risk aversion suggested by traditional risk-haven

    assets, such as treasuries and gold, had diverged significantly from the performance of risk assets, such as the NASDAQ. Brexit or

    not, such a glaring expectation gap must be bridged. Even if the final vote had been for “stay”, there would have been other

    catalysts to induce a sell-off.

    Focus Chart 1: Longer term, EU and China have long peaked. Significant overlapping tops. The US is next.

    Source: Bloomberg, Bank of Communications (Int’l)

    After the epic volatility surge across on Black Friday, how should we trade?

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    The long-term bearish trend on stocks will persist. Our research shows that the MSCI Europe measured in Euro has long peaked

    last April. The Shanghai Composite measured in USD peaked around two months later, and the USD currency conversion of the

    composite makes the composite peak at almost exactly the same level as it did in late 2007. This fact hints at the role of the

    over-extended RMB strength in nudging the Composite higher at the final stage of the Great China Bubble (Focus Chart 1).

    The significance of these trends in global stock markets is that they are mean-reverting, of which respective trajectory indicates

    clear peaks and troughs over the past two decades. Focus Chart 1 shows that the NASDAQ, as well as other US stock indices, will

    be amongst the next batch of stock indices to adjust. Slowing earnings growth, a strengthening USD and rising inflation pressure

    are strong headwinds for US stocks. (Please see our report “The Great China Bubble: Anniversary Lessons and Outlook” on 13

    June, 2016, and our FT column “Conflicts implied in the Brexit Trade” on 23 June, 2016).

    Near term, a nascent technical bounce, but not tradable. Assets that are the most sensitive to Brexit, such as the British Pound

    and European banks, appear to have reflected much stress in the near term. For instance, the near-term implied volatility in GBP

    has receded after surging to a level similar to late 2008 during the global financial crisis. The European Banking index and the

    Hang Seng, a major index that is heavily tilted towards financials, have revisited the level comparable to just before Lehman,

    during the European Crisis in 2011, and just before QE3 in 2012. A lot of bad news must have been priced in. (Focus Chart 2).

    Focus Chart 2: Near term, the Pound and EU banks, the most fragile assets to Brexit, have shown much stress.

    Source: Bloomberg, Bank of Communications (Int’l)

    http://big5.ftchinese.com/story/001068146

  • China Market Strategy 27 June 2016

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    That said, central bank intervention has compromised price signals from market trading. In Shanghai, one cannot be sure how

    much resilience is due to the “national team”. The market elation across the globe just before the Brexit result due to unrealistic

    betting odds, as well as the ensuing violent plunge, are the best indication of a market failure. We note that the non-commercial

    net long positions in the USD are being rebuilt, portending USD strength and potential headwind for a nascent technical rebound

    in stocks. China’s dwindling FX reserve and its close correlation with the RMB exchange rate also suggest that the long-term

    pressure on Chinese assets, such as stocks and properties, has not dissipated (Focus Chart 3 and 4).

    Focus Chart 3: USD will likely strengthen as a risk haven in the event of further turmoil.

    Source: Bloomberg, Bank of Communications (Int’l)

    Focus Chart 4: Long-term pressure for RMB depreciation from dwindling FX reserve persists.

    Source: Bloomberg, Bank of Communications (Int’l)

    Last summer’s crash presaged the bout of surging global volatility; 3 contagion channels. Our quantitative research shows that

    the Shanghai Composite leads global volatility surge by about a year. That is, the burst of the Great China Bubble last summer

    portended the current bout of surging global volatility (please see our report “The Great China Bubble: Anniversary Lessons and

    Outlook”, 13 June, 2016). Intuitively, the Shanghai Composite consistently leads China’s economic growth by about six months.

    As such, a weakening Shanghai Composite portends economic headwinds. Being an important global growth engine, an ailing

  • China Market Strategy 27 June 2016

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    4

    Chinese economy spells trouble for the world. And the effects from China’s economic woes will then eventually show up in

    global stock markets (Focus Chart 5).

    Focus Chart 5: The burst of the “Great China Bubble” presages looming global volatility events.

    Source: Bloomberg, Bank of Communications (Int’l)

    There are three channels that the Brexit volatility can affect China: 1) a volatility contagion through weakening market

    sentiment, permeating through China’s capital account (i.e. capital flight), and through current account (i.e. RMB depreciation);

    2) the impact on China’s direct investment in Europe; 3) the trade channel. Both Shanghai and Hong Kong showed surprising

    resilience amid epic market volatility roiled by Brexit on the “Black Friday”. Indeed, our sentiment model shows that both

    markets remain relatively calm after Friday’s close, and HK recovered roughly half of its intraday loss of more than 1,200 points

    (Focus Chart 6 and 7). Potential USD strength and mild market sentiment despite significant market plunge suggest that any

    technical rebound will be fleeting, and fraught with bouts of volatility, and thus very difficult to trade.

    Focus Chart 6: Shanghai market sentiment remains calm.

    (4)

    (3)

    (2)

    (1)

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    04/01 01/02 10/02 07/03 04/04 01/05 10/05 07/06 04/07 01/08 10/08 07/09 04/10 01/11 10/11 07/12 04/13 01/14 10/14 07/15 04/16

    -40%

    -30%

    -20%

    -10%

    0%

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    30%

    40%Shanghai Compos ite (Log Sca le, Lag 8 wks)

    Short-term Sentiment Index

    Source: Bloomberg, Bank of Communications (Int’l)

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    5

    Focus Chart 7: HK market sentiment remains calm.

    Source: Bloomberg, Bank of Communications (Int’l)

    Friday’s market was dominated by fear. As adrenaline starts to wane in the coming weeks, senses will come back to gauge the

    impact of capital flight, RMB depreciation, as well as other fundamentals such as trade. We think that the extent of RMB

    depreciation embedded in the RMB NDF is equivalent to 4Q08. As such, room for further significant RMB depreciation in 2016

    should be limited (Please see our report “The Great China Bubble: Anniversary Lessons and Outlook”, 13 June, 2016). But the EU

    is the largest trading partner with China. Although UK will have a two-year grace period to re-negotiate new terms with the EU,

    the uncertainties will still create an overhang, and affect bilateral trades between China and these regions. Before the dust

    settles, waiting is better than doing.

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