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Alternative Market Briefing

The Big Picture: A China crash in the making?

Friday, August 02, 2013

G. Bin Zhao

An Opalesque column for global macro investors.

This article was authored by G. Bin Zhao, an economist and co-founder of Gateway International Group, a global China consulting firm, and executive editor at China's Economy & Policy. G. Bin Zhao says that China's current economic difficulties, including the scale of its government debt, are not as severe as many fear, and are to some extent a temporary result of reforms. His article also appeared in the South China Morning Post.

Each time China's economy faces difficulties, talk of a collapse tends to surface. Some voices are driven by concerns about their investments; some are looking for speculative opportunities; others might just be following the trend, unable to draw their own conclusions. In any case, it's always necessary to think critically and deeply when absorbing new information, regardless of how authoritative the source may be.

So, what is the true picture of China's current economic situation? Will the country's stretched bank credit lead to a financial crisis? How severe are the debts accumulated by local governments and the shadow banking sector?

As I have said before in these columns, I expect China's economy to face a rough ride in the next few years as the new leadership introduces major changes. The current policy transitions, which are th......................

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