Chinese private companies are defaulting on their debt obligations even after receiving government bailouts, raising questions over Beijing’s efforts to rescue listed groups using public funds, reported the Financial Times.
Beijing last year launched one of the largest state-led campaigns to save troubled private sector businesses after falling stock prices hit so-called equity pledge financing, which enables companies to borrow using their own shares as collateral.
Of 339 listed private companies that have received government funding since the rescue campaign began in August 2018, 75 later reneged on payments even after local courts ordered them to pay up, according to public records. “The government bailout is encouraging moral hazard and rent seeking,” said Bo Zhuang, an economist at TS Lombard. “It is solving short-term problems by creating long-term ones.”
State-run financial institutions, including investment funds, brokerages and insurers, have lent more than RMB 160 billion ($22.7 billion) in the form of share pledge loans to distressed private-sector companies listed on the Shanghai and Shenzhen bourses, according to East Money Information, a financial information provider.