Following similar events earlier this year in Hong Kong and Beijing, Shanghai-based foreign media and business executives were the latest group in China to hear CKGSB Professor of Finance Gan Jie present the most recent results from her survey on China’s industrial economy, as the report’s 2015 Q3 results were made public for the first time last week.
CKGSB Professor of Finance Gan Jie takes to the stage to present
the results of her 2015 Q3 survey on China’s industrial economy
In front of a packed house at the Kempinski Hotel in Pudong, Prof Gan explained how the industrial economy declined further in the third quarter with a Business Sentiment Index (BSI) of 47, down from 50 in the first quarter. She added that the vast majority of firms surveyed expect operating conditions to be similar in the next quarter, with deflation now a reality. Fixed investments are the largest problem at the moment, with only 2% of firms making investments (down from 9% in Q2).
Prof Gan Jie outlines the current state of China’s economy
before taking questions from the audience
Given the questionable reliability of official data in China, Prof Gan’s large-scale, micro-level quarterly company survey is increasingly important since it sheds light on how the sector is truly coping and what types of reforms are needed—based not on opinion, but on a painstaking, fact-gathering process.
Unsurprisingly, the unparalleled detail of her research continues to draw widespread attention from the media. Journalists from The Economist, Bloomberg News, Reuters, Nikkei and many others were all in attendance.
Bloomberg News Shanghai Bureau Chief Greg Turk asks a question
following Prof Gan’s presentation of her Q3 survey results
WSJ sister company Dow Jones Newswires distributed a piece in both English and Chinese to more than 600,000 traders, analysts, finance officials and fund managers:
“The industrial economy in China declined further in the third quarter, according to a report by Professor Gan Jie of the Beijing-based Cheung Kong Graduate School of Business. Most firms surveyed expect operating conditions to see similar slowdown in the next quarter, with deflation now a reality, says Gan. Fixed-asset investing is the biggest area of decline, with only 2% of firms making such investments, says the report. Gan adds that industrial policy is key to a rebound, including industrial upgrade and technological innovation, and that monetary easing won’t help industrial economy”
China Daily business reporter Zhang Yangpeng wrote an entire article, also reprinted by Ecns.cn, focusing on Prof Gan’s Q3 report, the sixth one since she launched her survey in Q2 last year:
“The survey found excess capacity worsened in the third quarter, with 56 percent of responded firms reported supply exceeds demand, the highest ratio ever seen since the second quarter of 2014. ’Lack of orders’ was identified by 70 percent of firms as the largest factor hindering their production, far higher than the factor of rising labor cost (14 percent) and material cost (9 percent).
Gan Jie, the school’s Professor of Finance and chief author of the report, said any quick recovery is unlikely, as problems are structural and fundamental. Industrial policy is key to a rebound, including industry upgrade and technological innovation. Easing monetary policy will not help the industrial economy.”
A crowd of around 100 business executives from top international and Chinese firms,
as well as media from leading outlets, attended the event at the Kempinski Hotel in Shanghai
Meanwhile, Shanghai Daily featured Prof Gan’s report for the first time (reprinted in NewsGD.com and elsewhere) with reporter Leng Cheng also highlighting the issue with the problems currently afflicting China’s economy:
“The current problem is due to over-investment and a continuing lack of core competitiveness over many years,” Gan said, adding that easing monetary policy would not boost the sector.
To solve it, long-term industrial policy is the key: to ensure an orderly bankruptcy process, help the remaining companies upgrade their products and increase income and enhance domestic demand,” Gan pointed out.”
Prof Gan Jie is interviewed by Wang Lihuan from ICS
Chinese-language coverage was no less impressive, with reports from Hong Kong’s Takungpao newspaper among the most popular, while FT Chinese published this extensive commentary by Prof Gan herself examining what the latest results mean for China.
After the event, Prof Gan was interviewed by Channel News Asia’s Shanghai Correspondent Valarie Tan as well as by Wang Lihuan, anchor of the Money Talks program on International Channel Shanghai (ICS).
To read Prof Gan’s 2015 Q3 large-scale survey results and analysis in full, please click here.
“China Firms’ Fixed-Asset Investing Slows to a Crawl”, Dow Jones Newswires
“Business sentiment declines in Q3: Survey”, China Daily
“Long-term pain is the bane of industrial firms”, Shanghai Daily
“中国产业经济形势依然严峻”, FT Chinese