Home>News Center>China

Select firms float non-tradable shares
By Chen Hua (China Daily)
Updated: 2005-09-13 05:55

Nine of the 12 Shanghai-listed companies and 10 of the 28 Shenzhen-listed companies are SOEs. About 67 per cent of the 12 Shanghai-listed companies' shares are State shares and are non-tradable.

But share offering was still the main compensation approach, although the regulator and some key State departments announced they would urge companies to use more diverse ways to deal with the issue.

Nine of the 12 Shanghai-listed companies and 25 of the 28 Shenzhen-listed companies compensated shares to the holders of tradable shares.

"This is because of the simplicity of share offering," said Wai Kai, a senior research department manager of China Securities.

Compared with other methods such as warrants, share compensation was easier for retail investors to understand and consequently get their approval, he said.

All the companies' compensation proposals can be taken into effect only when getting the nod of at least two-thirds of the holders of tradable shares

Besides share offering, some companies also gave many promises to their holders of tradable shares in order to avoid a sharp drop of the share prices.

The Shanghai Automotive Industry Corporation Group (SAIC Group) announced it would use no more than 1 billion yuan (US$123 million) to buy back its stocks from the market if the share price fell below 3.98 yuan (49 US cents) per share at the market.

SAIC's average price over the past 30 trading days before last Friday was 5.09 yuan (63 US cents) per share.

SAIC Group also promised to distribute cash dividends to its shareholders using at least half of the company's distributable profit in the coming three years.

Almost all of the 40 companies are good market performers.

Eight of the 12 Shanghai-listed companies' income / net asset ratio exceeded 10 per cent last year. The average per share earnings for the 28 Shenzhen-listed companies was 0.4 yuan (5 US cents) last year, higher than the national level of 0.24 yuan (3 US cents).

The overhang of the non-tradable State shares was one of the key sources of China's sluggish stock market, said Liu Jipeng, a prominent expert and professor of the Capital University of Economics and Business.

China's shares have suffered a dramatic slump over the past four years and dropped to 1,188.2 points yesterday from about 2,200 points in June 2001.

China has tried to address the problem at least three times - in 1999, 2001, and again now.

In the first attempt, two pilot SOEs were selected to sell their state shares to the holders of tradable stocks. The experiment was not welcomed by the investors and within 15 days of the experiment, the share price of the two companies fell about 40 per cent. The regulator then had to give up.

The second share-merge attempt failed badly in 2001 because the guideline then was to price the traded and non-tradable shares equally.

In the present third attempt, the price of non-tradable shares is decided by the companies who negotiate with their small shareholders, or holders of the traded shares, the professor said.

Page: 12

President Hu visits Mexico
HK disneyland opens
Typhoon batters Zhejiang
  Today's Top News     Top China News

Fresh nuke talks bid to end nuclear impasse



Hu signs trade pacts with Mexico's Fox



Select firms float non-tradable shares



Typhoon Khanun hits East China, killing 14



Human tests prove AIDS vaccine safe



Boeing sells first private jet in China


  Oil prices eating away at Chinese economy
  Britain opens Chinese workers drowning case
  EU warns of new China textile 'disaster'
  India and China to reopen direct trade links
  President Hu arrives in Mexico for visit
  Shenzhou VI flight 'after October holiday'
  Go to Another Section  
  Story Tools  
  News Talk  
  It is time to prepare for Beijing - 2008