Regulators have made it easier for private companies to join China's two exchanges in Shanghai and the southern city of Shenzhen, though most listings still are for state enterprises. The Shenzhen exchange created a second board for small companies, imitating the U.S.-based Nasdaq market.
Major state companies such as oil giant PetroChina Ltd. and China Mobile Ltd., the world's biggest phone company by subscribers, also have issued shares abroad. None has indicated it plans to withdraw from foreign stock exchanges.
The economics also are shifting in China's favor.
U.S.-traded companies saw share prices plunge following the 2008 global crisis, while economic growth at home, even after a recent decline, is still forecast at about 8 percent this year. Rising Chinese incomes are creating a bigger pool of money for investment."Generally speaking, a company's shares are sold at a higher premium in initial public offerings on Chinese stock markets than on U.S. markets," said Mao Sheng, a market strategist for Huaxi Securities in the western city of Chengdu. Also, he said, "If the company's business is mainly in China, it will be good for its brand promotion." Another U.S.-traded company, Fushi Copperweld Inc., announced plans in June by its chairman, Li Fu, and a Hong Kong firm, Abax Global Capital, to take the maker of metallic conductors private. Muddy Waters cited Fushi Copperweld in April as one of several companies it said dealt with an investment bank that helped enterprises seeking U.S. stock market listings to conceal problems and misrepresent financial information. Fushi Copperweld denied Muddy Waters' "vague and nonspecific" claims. The company said its privatization will be financed with loans from the China Development Bank. Created to support construction of highways and other public works in China, CDB plays a growing role in its corporate expansion abroad. The bank provides credit to buyers of Chinese telecoms gear and other big-ticket goods and has financed building projects in Africa, Latin America and Asia.
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