China’s property prices rise again, driven by smaller cities

Looser residency status and cash subsidies circumvent regulations. Real estate prices are surging throughout China despite controls put in place to ward off a property bubble. Smaller cities taking advantage of loopholes are leading the upswing. Xi’an, the capital of Shaanxi province, last year instituted rules that let college students file the city as their place of … https://s.nikkei.com/2Mq8Szp

Japan companies board the Belt and Road train

Trans-Eurasian logistics and inland China development present fresh opportunities. Japanese companies are jumping on the bandwagon of China’s Belt and Road Initiative in search of fresh business opportunities. Cargo rail between Europe and China has exploded from fewer than 20 runs in 2011 to around 3,000 last year. The German industrial city of Duisburg, a stop on … https://s.nikkei.com/2JvnUOE

Buyer beware — MSCI is not a quality guarantee

Bending of index rules in hope of Chinese reforms is bound to lead to disappointment. Could MSCI, the financial market index company, live to regret its loudly trumpeted move to include Chinese domestic shares in its indexes starting June 1? The momentous step will compel fund managers tracking or benchmarking against MSCI’s global emerging markets index and others … https://s.nikkei.com/2Ji2vZQ

China’s Baidu to sell majority of financial services unit for $1.9bn

Deal gives web company heft against Alibaba and Tencent in fintech business. China’s Baidu Inc said it will sell a majority stake in its financial services business for about $1.9 billion to a consortium led by TPG Capital Management LP and Carlyle Group LP, as it seeks funding to take on established fintech firms in China. The investment will give Baidu the heft it … https://s.nikkei.com/2reC9jT

China moves up plans to open finance sector

Central bank chief says foreign ownership limits will be scrapped in three years. China will allow majority foreign control of brokerages and insurers in June and full foreign ownership in three years, part of an acceleration of financial sector reforms apparently aimed at easing tensions with the U.S. Opening up the sector wider to investment from abroad will boost … https://s.nikkei.com/2GXezhY