The US now has fewer listed public companies than China as a spate of shelved and fizzling initial public offerings has recently cast a pall over the US equity market, said the Financial Times.
There are now more than 4,800 listed Chinese companies, according to data from JPMorgan’s investment arm, double the number a decade ago and up more than tenfold over the past 20 years, while the number of public American companies has dropped significantly from its peak of more than 8,000 in 1996 to about 4,400 currently.
The number of listed US companies has been shrinking for more than two decades, as private equity firms and acquisitive companies have gobbled up many public groups. At the same time, ample venture capital and buoyant debt markets have allowed other fast-growing groups to stay private for much longer than in the past.
At the same time, China has been nurturing its own capital markets, listing many of its state-owned enterprises (SOEs) and encouraging more of the country’s private companies to go public, whether onshore, in Hong Kong or even in the US and Europe.