If you were to go to the webpage of the Shanghai Stock Exchange and walk away for an hour, you would find that the benchmark index hardly moved at all.
Despite a strong start after the National Day holiday, the market soon returned to its sleepy status.
Take Wednesday, for example. There was a spread of less than 12 points between the day high and day low for the Shanghai Composite Index.
The volatility, measured in percentage, fell to 0.38 percent, the lowest in more than a decade, according to the China Securities Journal.
Brokerages thrive on market movement but stagnancy is the their worst nightmare.
Since last year’s dramatic collapse, most mainland investors fell out of love with domestic equities.
Especially over the past six months, the resurgent and record-breaking home market is generally regarded as the best place to put your money.
In response to runaway home prices, numerous local governments have unveiled fresh curbs, but it still remains to be seen if that will discourage property speculators.
But even if the property market cools off, it does not mean investors will return to stocks, considering some of the painful lessons they have learned in the past year.
And there are more reasons they hesitate.
Many of China’s structural problems remain unresolved such as excess capacity and high corporate gearing.
There are also external concerns about a possible US rate hike, or uncertainty over Italian politics given the upcoming referendum, not to mention the US presidential election and the possibility of a hard Brexit.
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