Date
13 December 2019

Ko Tin-yau

Hong Kong Economic Journal columnist
  • Having pets instead of raising kids has become a global phenomenon. Photo: AFP

    China seen surpassing US as world’s largest pet market soon

    - Aug 30, 2016 3:34pm
    Major economies including China, Japan, the United States and Europe are trying to boost domestic consumption to restore growth, but the problem is that consumers are reluctant to spend money. One exception to this trend is the...
  • Audrey Tang is expected to bring new energy and diversity to the president's team. Photo: booksandideas.net

    Taiwan’s new digital minister: young, talented, transgender

    - Aug 29, 2016 10:12am
    Audrey Tang, 35, will join Taiwan’s cabinet as a minister without portfolio in October. The self-taught programmer and self-described “civic hacker” has been named an executive councilor to help the government in formulating its digital policies....
  • The Hang Seng Index closed down 41 points at 4 p.m. on Aug. 23, but staged a U-turn during the closing auction and eventually ended with a gain of one point. Photo: HKEJ

    Closing auction session: does it work?

    - Aug 26, 2016 10:21am
    The Hong Kong stock exchange reintroduced the closing auction session a month ago, and it’s about time we took a look to see if it’s working properly. The closing auction session was first launched in 2008,...
  • Liu Zichen (L), also known as ‘Snake spirit boy’, and Lee Hee Danae (R), ‘Snake spirit’, are among the Meitu users. Photos: Weibo

    Why investors should be cautious toward Meitu IPO

    - Aug 24, 2016 10:05am
    Chinese photo app developer Meitu plans to raise up to US$1 billion in a listing on the Hong Kong exchange. The company is valued at over US$5 billion and is regarded as the biggest internet IPO...
  • London Mayor Sadiq Khan tries the city's Night Tube. Photo: CNN

    Should MTR offer 24-hour services like London?

    - Aug 23, 2016 10:36am
    From proposal to reality, it took London about two decades to make Night Tube service happen. Now, the Tube will run 24 hours a day on Fridays and Saturdays. Currently, New York is the only city...
  • “It doesn’t go that the more you pay, the more patriotic you are,” Apple's Tim Cook said recently, hitting back at critics of his firm's tax strategy. Photo: CNET

    Tim Cook fights for US corporate tax reform

    - Aug 22, 2016 11:17am
    Wealth inequality has been widening since the world embraced globalization in the 80s. The situation became worse after the financial crisis in 2008 prompted worldwide monetary easing. In his book “Capital in the Twenty-First Century”, French...
  • Huawei sold 8.4 percent more smartphones in the second quarter compared to a year earlier, but some other Chinese brands have slipped. Photo: notebookitalia.com

    China smartphone makers face challenges

    - Aug 19, 2016 10:07am
    The smartphone industry has seen significant shift in market shares, particularly among the Chinese brands. Globally, Samsung has kept the top spot and Apple is still the runner up. But Xiaomi, which was earlier in the...
  • Through the aggressive use of loans, Evergrande chairman Xu Jiayin has built the company to become the country's second largest developer within just a decade. Photo: Bloomberg

    Evergrande: Too big to fail?

    - Aug 18, 2016 1:50pm
    Evergrande Real Estate Group (03333.HK) has wowed the market recently with its purchase of a stake in bigger rival Vanke Co. (02202.HK, 000002.CN). So far Evergrande has spent 20.8 billion yuan (US$3.14 billion) and has built...
  • If China can make real progress in slashing its overcapacity, the economy may pick up steam again in one or two years. Photo: Bloomberg

    When will China economy bottom out?

    - Aug 17, 2016 11:00am
    China’s economic growth has started to slow down markedly since 2012. And the long-awaited bottoming sign has proved illusive over the past few years. According to a new forecast made in a China Daily article, the...
  • Taikang can help Sotheby’s grow in China while Sotheby’s strong brand and credibility in the global auction market will help the Chinese company expand overseas. Photo: Sotheby’s

    Sotheby’s new biggest shareholder from China

    - Aug 16, 2016 10:38am
    What can HK$1.8 billion buy? Maybe several large diamonds, a couple of rare paintings in Sotheby’s auctions, or a stake in the world’s top auction house itself, which is what mainland insurer Taikang Life Insurance Co...
  • With over 100 brands, P&G is the world's largest advertiser, using a mix of traditional as well as digital media. Image credit: gurufocus

    What’s behind P&G’s cutback on targeted Facebook ads?

    - Aug 15, 2016 10:51am
    Facebook has dominated the social network world with its 1.6 billion users. However, the world’s biggest advertiser, Procter & Gamble, said recently that it will scale back ads on Facebook that target specific consumers, and consider...
  • With strong sales income in excess of 180 billion yuan in the first seven months, Evergrande chairman Xu Jiayin no doubt has lots of ammunition to back his purchase of Vanke shares, or even acquire the rival. Photo: Reuters

    Stake purchase sparks sudden revival of China property plays

    - Aug 12, 2016 11:03am
    For years, mainland property stocks have been avoided or underweighted by institutional investors, who believe China’s home market bubble is about to burst. Most stocks in the sector have slumped below their net asset value, and...
  • Acquiring Jet.com may help Walmart challenge Amazon, but it’s going to cost handsomely if the retail giant backs the online retailer's cut-throat pricing strategy. Photo: Bloomberg

    Can acquiring Jet.com help Walmart win battle against Amazon?

    - Aug 11, 2016 1:40pm
    Billionaire investor Warren Buffett once described the supermarket business as a non-starter. The logic is that even if a supermarket gains lots of customers, a rival can always appear out of nowhere and take the business...
  • Paul Pogba will be paid over 17 million euros annually under a five-year contract. Photo:101greatgoals

    Why Manchester United paid 130 mln euros for Paul Pogba

    - Aug 10, 2016 11:50am
    What can you do with HK$1.1 billion? You can snap up a small company listed on the main board of the Hong Kong stock exchange, purchase more than 100 medium-sized flats at Taikoo Shing, or, in...
  • By combining book and non-book businesses, Taiwan's Eslite is able to ward off competition in Hong Kong. Photo: HKdigit

    Book retailing: Lessons from Eslite

    - Aug 9, 2016 11:42am
    Hong Kong is a good place for book lovers as the city boasts 21 bookshops per 100,000 people, the highest density of book stores globally. Now we come to this question: how do the book stores...
  • President Tsai Ing-wen has been accused of failing to offer anything concrete to revitalize the sagging economy. Photo: Reuters

    Why Taiwan stock market may not sustain rally

    - Aug 8, 2016 10:06am
    Cross-strait relations have been on a tightrope since Taiwan’s President Tsai Ing-wen took office two months ago, but the island’s stock market has been the best performer in Asia during the period. The Taiwan Stock Exchange Weighted...
  • Though far smaller than a previous scheme in 2009, Japan's latest round of cash handout can help lift consumer spending in the country. Photo: Bloomberg

    Japan’s handout scheme looks too small, or is it?

    - Aug 5, 2016 10:31am
    The size of Japan’s long-awaited stimulus package turned out to be much smaller than expected. Under the scheme, only about 22 million people (17 percent of Japan’s population) are expected to benefit and each person is...
  • As the younger generation gets hooked to mobile games like Pokémon GO, Macau's casinos face a new challenge. Photo: Reuters

    Macau casinos face new challenge amid mobile game craze

    - Aug 3, 2016 6:22pm
    Macau’s gaming revenue witnessed a rebound in July, fueling hopes for an upturn in casino-related firms on the stock market. Investors should, however, bear in mind that Macau casinos are still heavily dependent on mainland customers....
  • Guo Guangchang (second from right), founder of Fosun International, briefly went missing late last year. Photo: HKEJ

    Fosun pays HK$20 billion in four overseas takeovers

    - Aug 2, 2016 5:32pm
    I always believe Fosun International (00656.HK) is the most interesting private company in China which has become a global conglomerate after the nation’s opening-up. Established by graduates of Fudan University, the company has had a good track...
  • Japanese trading house Itochu has faced questions from a US-based activist short-seller over accounting practices. Photo: Bloomberg

    Short-seller Glaucus targets Itochu

    - Aug 1, 2016 6:10pm
    Glaucus Research Group last week targeted trading house Itochu Corp., marking the first time that the US activist short-seller has taken aim at a Japanese entity. In a report released on July 27, Glaucus accused Itochu of...