7 December 2019

Ko Tin-yau

Hong Kong Economic Journal columnist
  • Gao Shanwen expects China's economy to slow further in 2020, but he remains optimistic on the prospects for A-shares. Photo:

    China’s growth tipped to slow further next year

    - Dec 2, 2019 5:03pm
    Gao Shanwen, chief economist at Essence Securities, said in an internal speech last week that China’s economic growth could fall to a range of 4-5 percent. As one of the top economists in China, Gao’s opinions...
  • A US private-equity firm’s Manchester City stake purchase deal reflects the improving valuations of English Premier League teams. Photo: Reuters

    How English Premier League is closing the value gap with NBA

    - Dec 2, 2019 11:27am
    Topend Sports, an online sport and science information platform, published last year a list of the world’s most popular sports, based on a set of 13 criteria including number of participants, viewers, social media impact, mainstream...
  • Having acquired several troubled projects from local governments in China in the past, Sunac has now set its sights on Chengdu's mammoth New Century Global Centre. Photo:

    What’s prompting Sunac to buy 51% in world’s largest building?

    - Nov 29, 2019 10:49am
    Sunac China Holdings (01918.HK) has agreed to acquire 51 percent stake in the company that owns New Century Global Centre, the largest freestanding building in the world. New Century Global Centre, located in Chengdu in China’s...
  • Gokurakuyu is said to be enthused by the response from Chinese customers to its product and service offerings. Photo:

    Japan hot bath chain Gokurakuyu said to eye China unit spinoff

    - Nov 28, 2019 11:10am
    Gokurakuyu, a Japan-based firm involved in hot bath business, is planning to spin off its Chinese operation, according to reports. The Japanese bathhouse chain expanded into China in 2011. It now has eight outlets in the...
  • Huawei has released promotional videos wherein founder Ren Zhengfei speaks of the firm’s journey from small beginnings into its current status as the world’s largest telecoms equipment firm. Photo: Reuters

    Huawei’s startup story and its early ties with Hong Kong

    - Nov 27, 2019 11:10am
    Chinese technology giant Huawei has hired BBC’s commercial arm to make promotional videos on the “The Real Story of Huawei”. The video series features founder Ren Zhengfei describing how Huawei grew from a small company into...
  • AiA's decision to hire Ping An's Lee Yuan Siong reflects the Asia-focused insurer's ambitions to boost its mainland China business further as growth in Hong Kong slows. Photos: Reuters, Bloomberg

    Why AIA poached a top executive from Ping An

    - Nov 26, 2019 11:30am
    As China’s insurance market is set to open up more for foreigners, AIA Group 01299.HK) is doing all it can to get prepared, including poaching a top executive from rival Ping An Insurance. AIA announced Friday...
  • Zimbabwean Finance Minister Mthuli Ncube has faced questions over foreign aid receipts data amid suspicions of understating Chinese donations. Photo: Reuters

    China’s Zimbabwe donation saga

    - Nov 25, 2019 12:15pm
    China has been donating a lot to Third World nations in recent years, spending tens of billions of yuan each year. The move has stirred public outcry at home, with some Chinese wondering aloud that “many...
  • Beijing boasts the largest number of wealthy families in China, according to Hurun. Photo: Reuters

    Shifts in China’s wealth landscape

    - Nov 22, 2019 10:16am
    For the year ended 2018, Hurun has pointed out some interesting changes in China’s wealth distribution. While the number of Chinese families owning at least 6 million yuan (US$853,500) has increased, the population of super and...
  • Marie Kondo says her tidying method 'isn't about getting rid of things', but rather about 'heightening your sensitivity to what brings you joy.’ Photo: Reuters/KonMari

    How tidying icon Marie Kondo is monetizing her KOL status

    - Nov 21, 2019 11:28am
    Marie Kondo, the Japanese tidying celebrity, has opened her own online homeware store, prompting a buzz on social media. Kondo rose to international fame by encouraging people to get rid of unnecessary things. Her book “The...
  • Australia’s unemployment rate unexpectedly rose to 5.3 percent in October, up 0.4 percentage point from the beginning of this year. Photo: Reuters

    Planning to emigrate to Australia? Better think twice

    - Nov 20, 2019 8:04am
    Australia’s unemployment rate unexpectedly rose to 5.3 percent in October, up 0.4 percentage point from the beginning of this year. The underemployment rate also climbed to 8.5 percent. Australia is one of the most popular immigration...
  • Under Armour says its disclosures and accounting practices have been 'entirely appropriate'. Photo: Bloomberg

    Under Armour’s fall from grace

    - Nov 19, 2019 9:18am
    The Wall Street Journal reported last week that Under Armour had sent a large amount of products to off-price chains in the past in order to jack up sales artificially. The company’s sales growth has slowed...
  • China’s leading on-demand delivery service platforms like Meituan Dianping and together hire around 8 million delivery staff. Photo: AFP

    Are food delivery apps creating any value?

    - Nov 18, 2019 10:30am
    Food delivery apps have become a big hit in China. But do they create any true value to keep the business sustainable? China’s leading on-demand delivery service platforms like Meituan Dianping (03690.HK) and together hire...
  • Hong Kong is managing to lure some high-profile stock offering deals despite the months-long social unrest in the city. Photo: Reuters

    HK financial markets show great resilience, for now

    - Nov 15, 2019 8:47am
    Chinese e-commerce giant Alibaba is working toward a secondary listing in Hong Kong, aiming to make a debut on the local bourse as soon as Nov. 26. If things go without a hitch, the deal could...
  • Factory operational costs in Dongguan are significantly lower than those in Shenzhen. Photo: Reuters

    Manufacturing powerhouse Dongguan regains momentum

    - Nov 14, 2019 8:30am
    Dongguan’s GDP growth has accelerated to 7.2 percent for the first three quarters of 2019, from 6.9 percent in the first half of the year. This is in sharp contrast with Shenzhen, which suffered a rapid...
  • Some homebuyers in Shenzhen are required to pay the luxury home tax even if they only buy a tiny apartment with an area of 35 square meters. Photo: Reuters

    Shenzhen eases tax rule on luxury homes

    - Nov 13, 2019 1:20pm
    Shenzhen’s housing and construction bureau announced on Monday that all residential apartments smaller than 144 square meters in the southern city will be exempted from the luxury home tax. The move is expected to boost the...
  • Lower living costs and a more relaxed lifestyle are prompting a growing number of Chinese to opt to live in smaller towns. Photo: Yicai

    Why a young Chinese man opted for a small northeastern city

    - Nov 12, 2019 11:49am
    While a lot of young mainlanders are struggling with exorbitant home prices in big cities, Li Hai, 33, recently bought a 77-square-meter apartment in the northeastern Heilongjiang province for less than 60,000 yuan (US$8,450) Li, born...
  • it’s not at all surprising for billionaire investor Warren Buffett to look for investment opportunities in the fastest-growing major economy. Photo: Reuters

    Warren Buffett rumored to be seeking top Chinese fund managers

    - Nov 11, 2019 12:17pm
    An online rumor has gone viral in China recently, saying that billionaire investor Warren Buffett is planning to invite 10 top-notch fund managers and entrepreneurs from China to meet with him in his Omaha office for...
  • It is estimated that Shenzhen's economy grew a marginal 0.5 percent in the third quarter. Photo: Reuters

    Will Shenzhen fall into recession?

    - Nov 8, 2019 11:37am
    It’s been circulating on the internet that Shenzhen’s economy nearly slipped into negative growth in the third quarter. According to official data, the city’s GDP expanded 6.6 percent year on year in the first nine months...
  • News that China and the United States are close to signing a trade deal should boost investor confidence and pave the way for the return of the bull market. Photo: Weibo

    Are Chinese equities set for a bull ride?

    - Nov 7, 2019 3:31pm
    The Shanghai Composite Index is approaching 3,000 points. People are again talking about the arrival of the bull market. But is it for real this time? The index hit a high of 3,200 points in April,...
  • Meituan reported a net profit of 450 million yuan (US$64.32 million) in the first half of this year, compared with a loss of 4.2 billion yuan in the same period last year. Photo: Reuters

    Meituan’s dramatic turnaround and share price surge

    - Nov 6, 2019 8:01am
    Meituan Dianping (03690.HK), China’s largest online food delivery-to-ticketing services platform,  has surged over 120 percent year-to-date. It’s one of the very few successful examples of the cash-burning business model. Online food delivery platforms actually originated in...