Stock Market

Baidu, Alibaba, & Tencent Earnings This Week, SOE ETFs Prepare To Launch In China

Key News

Asian equities had a strong start to the week though Southeast Asia was mostly lower. Mainland China and Hong Kong opened down but made strong positive moves in the afternoon.

Friday was a very weak day in US-listed China stocks as China’s loan data was weak and the low CPI was cited as an indicator of lackluster demand. Suddenly, low inflation is a bad thing? As CICC equity strategist Kevin Liu noted in our San Francisco event last week, property’s slow rebound is reducing demand for loans. China’s rebound will be driven by domestic consumption rather than infrastructure and export-driven manufacturing, making it an “atypical” recovery, i.e. different than previous economic recoveries. We’ll include a link to Kevin’s session once it is available.

Friday’s weakness was ultimately driven by light demand as geopolitical concerns remain an overhang along with the US debt ceiling. On the geopolitical front, there are some “green shoots” as communication has picked up, which ultimately could lead to a Biden-Xi meeting later this year. Li Hui, a top Chinese diplomat, will visit Ukraine tomorrow along with several European countries this week. This week is busy for economic releases and US-listed China stocks with Baidu
reporting tomorrow, Tencent reporting Wednesday, and Alibaba reporting Thursday.

There were several positive catalysts today as several Mainland banks cut their deposit ratio, the People’s Bank of China (PBOC) injected liquidity into the financial system, the Hang Seng Index will add and JD Health at its June 5th rebalance, three SOE-focused ETFs are raising investor money prior to launching on the Mainland, while the SOE regulator spoke about SOE’s role in the economy. The Financial Times noted investors’ buying of SOEs for their healthy dividend yields.

Hong Kong’s most heavily traded stocks by value were Tencent, which gained +3.9% on strong buying from Mainland investors via Southbound Stock Connect, Meituan, which gained +3.41%, Alibaba HK, which gained +0.95% as its e-commerce-focused Taobao Tmall Commerce Group announced “a significant investment” to attract customers, China Mobile, which gained +0.23%, China Construction Bank, which gained +1.51%, and, which fell -2.56% as several analysts lowered their price targets. The Hang Seng Index closed just below 20,000 level as total volume and short volume were light going into earnings season. Mainland China had a strong day on good volume though remained below the RMB 1 trillion level. Foreign investors bought a healthy $587 million worth of Mainland stocks via Northbound Stock Connect. Clean technology had a strong day as the Mainland’s most heavily traded stock by value was Tianqi Lithium, which gained +10%.

The Hang Seng and Hang Seng Tech indexes gained +1.75% and +1.33%, respectively, on volume that decreased -1.12% from Friday, which is 85% of the 1-year average. Main Board short turnover fell -12.61% from Friday, which is 70% of the 1-year average as 14% of turnover was short turnover. 346 stocks advanced while 144 declined. Growth factors outperformed value factors while large caps outpaced small caps. All sectors were positive as communication gained +3.3%, consumer staples gained +2.42%, and financials gained +2.26%. The top-performing subsectors were insurance, software, and media, while businesses and professional services were down. Southbound Stock Connect volumes were light as Mainland investors bought $210 million worth of Hong Kong stocks as Tencent was a strong net buy, Li Auto was a small net sell, and Meituan and Kuiashou were both small net buys.

Shanghai, Shenzhen, and the STAR Board gained +1.17%, +1.18%, and +1.15%, respectively, on volume that increased +10.78% from Friday, which is 102% of the 1-year average. 2,918 stocks advanced while 1,694 stocks declined. Growth factors outperformed value factors as small caps outpaced large caps. The top-performing sectors were materials, which gained +2.36%, financials, which gained +1.85%, and technology, which gained +1.75%. Meanwhile, communication services fell -2.48, utilities fell -0.62%, and real estate fell -0.28%. The top-performing subsectors were insurance, power generation equipment, and office supplies, while cultural media, telecom, and textiles were the worst. Northbound Stock Connect volumes were moderate/high as foreign investors bought $587 million worth of Mainland stocks as Ping An was a small net sell, and Kweichow Moutai and Agricultural Bank were small net buys. CNY and the Asia Dollar Index gained on US dollar weakness overnight. Shanghai copper and steel both gained.

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Last Night’s Performance

Last Night’s Exchange Rates, Prices, & Yields

  • CNY per USD 6.95 versus 6.96 Friday
  • CNY per EUR 7.56 versus 7.55 Friday
  • Yield on 1-Day Government Bond 1.37% versus 1.37% Friday
  • Yield on 10-Year Government Bond 2.72% versus 2.71% Friday
  • Yield on 10-Year China Development Bank Bond 2.88% versus 2.87% Friday
  • Copper Price +0.70% overnight
  • Steel Price +1.59% overnight
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