Regulator to manage IPO pace

 An investor looks at stock prices in a brokerage house in Beijing, Jan 8, 2016. Photo:IC

The Chinese securities regulator said on Friday that it will "appropriately manage" the pace of new share sales to stabilize investors' anticipation, underscoring the regulator's desire to contain more fluctuations after the market rebounded.
 
The regulator's statement came after the benchmark Shanghai Composite Index suffered a 10 percent loss in a week, with market shutdowns on Monday and Thursday triggered by the circuit breaker mechanism.
 
On Friday, the benchmark Shanghai Composite Index surged by 1.97 percent after the securities authorities suspended the controversial circuit breaker mechanism the night before. The mechanism was blamed for worsening liquidity crunch in the market.
 
Deng Ge, the spokesman for the China Securities Regulatory Commission, said at a news conference that the regulator will appropriately arrange the new share sales based on the principle of enhancing trading vitality and stabilizing the market.
 
To allay concerns about massive new initial public offerings draining market liquidity, Deng said the launch of the much-anticipated registration-based IPO system will not occur on March 1 as previously reported.
 
Since the Chinese market experienced unprecedented volatility in the past week, the regulator has adopted measures to calm investors' anxiety, including scrapping the circuit breaker mechanism and restricting share sales by major shareholders of listed companies to no more than 1 percent of their companies' total shares within three months.
 
"The circuit breaker is a magnifier, but not trigger, of market volatility. Suspension of the mechanism should decelerate the decline in A shares to reflect China's weakening fundamentals. But it will not reverse the decline," said Hong Hao, chief strategist at investment bank BOCOM International.
 
State-controlled funds also stepped into the market by purchasing stocks on Friday, snapping up financial shares and those with large weightings in benchmark indexes, Bloomberg reported, citing people familiar with the matter.
 
While it was expected that the so-called national team of State institutions will continue to buy stocks, some analysts said that the rebound could be short-lived, since investors have been unable to find any positive factors in the economic fundamentals.
 
But a sign of relief for investors was that the renminbi's decline for eight consecutive days came to a halt on Friday, highlighting the Chinese monetary authorities' determination to keep the currency stable.


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