MR. SHANGKONG

MR. SHANGKONG

George Chen is Managing Editor for SCMP.com International Edition. He muses about the interplay between the two financial centres, Shanghai and Hong Kong, in his Mr. Shangkong columns online and in print. George, a 2014 Yale World Fellow, is the author of two books about China and Hong Kong. Follow George on Twitter: @george_chen

Big or small, patience may be the clue to investment success

Bain's investment in Gome is widely considered a textbook case in the private equity industry.  Photo: Xinhua

Does big really mean good, or even successful? Or is it time for us to think differently? I raised these questions in a report I wrote last week about foreign investments in China, which attracted mixed reactions from readers.

Monday, 29 April, 2013, 8:10am

Old Shanghai legacy guardian to be remembered for her writing

Cheng Naishan pictured in 2007. Photo: Courtesy of He Zhaoya

Cheng Naishan, widely considered an icon of Shanghai literature who enjoyed close personal ties with Hong Kong, died on Monday morning in hospital after a long battle with leukaemia.

22 Apr 2013 - 10:12pm

Amex can make a difference if it takes complaints seriously

Amex can make a difference if it takes complaints seriously

It's no secret that many well-paid bankers are fans of American Express credit cards, which to some have an aura of exclusivity - Visa or MasterCard being considered too common.

22 Apr 2013 - 6:50am 2 comments

US banker proud to become Chinese national

Some in Hong Kong’s financial community were surprised by an e-mail from one of the most veteran investment bankers in the city on Tuesday night. Marshall Nicholson, a managing director in charge of investment banking in Hong Kong for China International Capital Corporation (CICC) told his colleagues and friends that he had officially renounced his United States citizenship and would soon receive a HKSAR passport.

29 Aug 2013 - 4:13am

When it comes to the gold price war, bullish Chinese consumers can't wait to buy

Customers select gold products in a gold shop in Suzhou, east China's Jiangsu Province. Photo: Xinhua

While people in the United States and Europe are selling gold in panic, apparently it’s a very different story in the east.

16 Apr 2013 - 2:25pm 1 comment

A tale of two cities reveals the art of ambition and confidence

Steven Murphy, Christie's CEO. Photo: Dickson Lee

Many readers of my column know I am a native of Shanghai and have been working and living in Hong Kong since 2008. The column is called Mr. Shangkong, which combines Shanghai and Hong Kong into one word.

Given my background, I am often asked by friends in either city more or less the same question: "Which city is better?" Well, I have to say I can't offer a simple answer.

15 Apr 2013 - 6:55am 6 comments

Growing mistrust will result from 'no comments' or denials

UBS revealed as mystery lender for Thai group's purchase of Ping An. Photo: Reuters

While some scholars praise China for being a more open society, the business world in China is apparently the other way round. Doing business in China is becoming more important than ever amid an economic slowdown in the West in recent years, and it's also getting less transparent.

8 Apr 2013 - 8:56am

What analysts won't tell you about selling out of a stock

Deutsche Bank put a "sell" rating on Tsui Wah, the well-known local restaurant chain operator that recently went public in Hong Kong. Photo: K.Y. Cheng

In the stock market, there is a widely acknowledged principle: it's more important for investors to know when to sell than when to buy because you can only secure your profits when you sell.

1 Apr 2013 - 12:29pm

Unintended consequence of property price curbs: more stock market speculation

Amid policy tigtening, some Hong Kong property investors have chosen to leave the market for a while. Photo: AP

The Hong Kong government has been keen to curb fast-rising property prices since late last year, but all its efforts may be creating a new problem: more speculation in the city's stock market.

25 Mar 2013 - 11:02am 2 comments

Are Chinese banks really prepared for launch in Hong Kong?

China International Capital Corporation Limited (CICC) President and CEO Levin Zhu. Photo: Reuters

It's no secret in Hong Kong's financial community that mainland banks have become the major job creators in the city, rescuing many laid-off bankers, mostly from Western banks.

Now it seems more job opportunities will appear at mainland banks and securities firms as they are set to open branches and offices in Hong Kong this year, thanks to Beijing's latest policy thrust.

18 Mar 2013 - 9:03am

Shares of local dairy-makers may win as rules force consumers to shop at home

A security guard enforces the new baby formula limits at Sheung Shui in Hong Kong. Photo: SCMP

The Netherlands is the latest country to limit infant formula purchases after some Dutch supermarkets found Chinese customers buying suspiciously large quantities of formula.

14 Mar 2013 - 3:43pm

HSBC's Gulliver becomes poster boy for Brobdingnagian bonuses

Stuart Gulliver. Photo: Bloomberg

HSBC just announced disappointing results for 2012, a year full of bad news for the global bank founded in Hong Kong and Shanghai. Despite bad results, chief executive Stuart Gulliver still secured a bonus of £1.95 million (HK$22.7 million) for last year. His total compensation came to HK$109 million, including the release of deferred bonuses from previous years. For comparison, Gulliver's total compensation in 2011 was HK$82 million.

14 Mar 2013 - 2:34pm 1 comment

China's banking regulator fumbles Shang damage control

Rumours of a corruption probe into Shang Fulin, chairman of the China Banking Regulatory Commission, started circulating on Saturday. The CBRc issued a statement on Monday apparently intended to dispel the rumours. Photo: Xinhua

As boring and insubstantial government news releases go, the bland piece that China’s top banking regulator put on the top of its website on Monday probably ranks eight out of 10.

4 Mar 2013 - 10:51pm

A house is not a home until it becomes affordable

A house is not a home until it becomes affordable

Property prices are one of the hottest topics in Hong Kong these days. Everyone seems to have a strong opinion, although many have lost sight of the real issue.

4 Mar 2013 - 9:02am 3 comments

Investors shocked to discover fund managers' private views

When the conversation was leaked to the public, the stock market in Shanghai quickly sank. Photo: Xinhua

The past week proved to be a scandalous one for the mainland's stock market.

A private conversation about the market outlook between one of the mainland's most respected analysts and an influential fund manager was secretly recorded by a third party and then leaked to the public.

The impact? What a shock!

25 Feb 2013 - 2:49pm 2 comments