There may still be exuberance over last week’s announcement of China’s second quarter GDP growth (7.9%, thank you very much), but regulators aren’t exactly dancing in the streets. The latest economic bogeyman is bank lending, which reached more than US$1.1 trillion in the first half. The head of the China Banking Regulatory Commission (CBRC), Liu Mingkang, has said that banks will be required to raise their bad-loan reserve ratios to 150% by the end of the year in order to stave off “accumulated risks” from rapid growth in new loans. This may not send shockwaves through the banking sector, as most banks already have bad-loan ratios over 150%, but when combined with comments from the Shanghai branch of the CBRC, ordering banks to obey the rules on mortgages and lending, you get a sense that banking regulators aren’t sleeping too well at night. Nonetheless, the signposts all continue to point to growth – GDP is humming along, and markets on the mainland and in Hong Kong have rebounded, leading to a new crop of IPOs. The latest Chinese firm with share issuing aspirations is China Pacific Insurance, which has revived plans for a Hong Kong listing that could fetch at least US$2.5 billion.