A mainland Chinese credit rating agency has warned over the health of Huarong Asset Management, the state-backed distressed debt manager, which has become the focus of a market sell-off in Asia this week, reported the Financial Times.
China Chengxin Credit said in a statement on Thursday that it was cutting its credit outlook on the company to “negative” because of concerns over its declining profitability and high debt levels.
Huarong, a sprawling conglomerate which was launched as part of a clean-up of the Chinese banking system after the Asian crisis of the late 1990s, has come under market scrutiny since it announced at the end of March that it would delay the release of its 2020 results, alongside expectations of a potential restructuring.
Concerns have centered on a lack of transparency over the quality of its RMB 1.7 trillion ($260 billion) balance sheet, especially assets originated under the leadership of Lai Xiaomin, its former chair who was in January executed for corruption and bigamy, said the FT.
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