China’s civil aviation recovery not affirmed, but government support remains strong for national airlines

02 Dec 2022

China’s civil aviation industry has been hit hard by the outbreak of the coronavirus pandemic. On top of significant losses in 2020 and 2021, the top three Chinese airlines' combined revenue fell again by 21% YoY from January to September 2022, due to occasional lockdowns and travel restrictions, while the combined net loss for the period already reached RMB73.8 billion amid a further increase in fuel costs. In addition, these airlines' combined cost of sales (excluding depreciation and amortization expense) was higher than their combined revenue in the first half of 2022, which implies that the Big Three were losing money even on operating cash levels. Looking ahead, IATA still expects the overall global air passenger level to return to the pre-pandemic level by 2024 but expects China to achieve this by 2025. While we believe air traffic in China should return to recovery mode soon as restrictions on domestic and international travel gradually ease, any changes in the outbreak could pose a risk to traffic flows, as has happened over the past two years. On the other hand, we believe the overall creditworthiness of China's aviation industry remains sound despite the lack of recovery in air passenger traffic so far, because of continuous government supports in the format of subsidies and equity injection.

Which Chinese Local Governments Face Greater Fiscal Stress in 2022?

25 Nov 2022

The tax rebate initiative in terms of boosting the economy this year has hindered the fiscal revenue of local governments. Only six provincial-level LGs’ GPBR has seen a year-on-year upswing (natural calibre) in the first three quarters of 2022, and other provincial-level regions’ GPBR declined to varying degrees. Overall, we believe some provincial LGs’ fiscal revenue is under heavy downside pressure, and the transfer payment increment from the central government is insufficient to offset the diminution in LGs’ self-revenue. LGs further rely on special debt and other financing tools to support local fiscal expenditures and infrastructure investment, ensuing an increase in LGs’ leverage. LGs' leverage overall is expected to rise further this year, but under the proactive fiscal policies, their direct debt growth rates may vary under proactive fiscal policies. Against the background of greater downward pressure on the economy, the importance of preventing and defusing LG debt risks is gradually increasing, and some indebted regions are controlling debt growth and leverage. Nevertheless, fiscal revenues in these regions have been significantly suppressed this year, and overall fiscal pressure is still on the rise.

Chinese Property Market: Restoring Confidence Challenges Recoveries

14 Nov 2022

China property sales have fallen rapidly since the third quarter of 2021, driven by weak market demand and tight refinancing. In the first nine months of 2022, residential property sales declined by 29% year-on-year. There has been a marginal recovery since May, especially in cities with supportive policies. In 2023, we expect property sales to stabilize; however, a sharp rebound is unlikely.In our view, a direct bailout is unlikely given the Chinese government’s determination to curb speculation. We expect the government to gradually stabilize the property industry and reduce the industry’s role in the economy. 

Contagion Risks from China’s Small Banks Containable

16 Sep 2022

We expect village and town banks in China to experience more difficulties, particularly in their asset quality and liquidity metrics, as a result of market headwinds and weak economic growth, as well as their inadequate risk management, constant lack of financial transparency, and structural issues inherent to their regions. However, in our view, material spillovers are less likely, as these small and medium-sized banks account for less than 15% of total banking sector assets and the authorities are handling this problem with caution and efficiency.

Auto sector stimulus to drive near-term sales spike in China; long-term impact to be subtle

15 Aug 2022

China’s auto sales momentum has been soft since 2017, even before the coronavirus pandemic outbreak. Given the government’s latest stimulus policy directive for the auto industry, we believe that the central government is determined to ensure that auto sales momentum recovers this time around. while some may be concerned that China’s new PV market is saturated, with rising ownership penetration and traffic congestions, we still believe there is ample room for growth in China’s auto demand, albeit at a slower pace, and domestic PV sales will continue to grow moderately as penetration increases and will not reach a saturation point anytime soon. Albert several negative factors, our view on auto manufacturers’ credit outlook is stable.

Combing through the creditworthiness of regional governments in Sichuan Province

11 Jul 2022

Key takeaways: - Economic development of the prefecture-level regions in Sichuan is relatively unbalanced, showing a pattern of “one superpower and many weak”. - There are considerable gaps among the budgetary strength and debt level of various cities in Sichuan province. - Economic and budgetary strength of the districts and counties in Chengdu has obvious location characteristics. - Liquidity condition of county-level divisions of Chengdu as a whole is better than other prefecture-level cities in Sichuan province. - Sichuan has shown much disparity in stand-alone indicative credit estimates (ICE) of prefecture-level governments. After considering the support of their higher-level governments, the results of indicative credit estimates are relatively concentrated.

Evaluating the Performance of Credit Ratings Using Default Data and Quantitative Measures 2022 (Chinese)

17 Jun 2022

This research utilizes the quantitative assessment approach (i.e., discriminatory power, predictive accuracy and rating stability) outlined in the research report “Evaluating the Performance of Credit Ratings Using Default Data and Quantitative Measures” to assess the performance of credit ratings issued by seven Chinese credit rating agencies (CRAs) from 2014 to 2021. In terms of discriminatory power, we examined whether the CRAs’ ratings can effectively differentiate between issuers that will default within one year. The results of AUROC (Area Under the Receiver Operating Characteristic Curve), AR (Accuracy Ratio) and K-S statistic (Kolmogorov-Smirnov Statistic) show that China Bond Rating and CSCI Pengyuan perform relatively well. In comparison to two years ago, the AUROC of Golden Credit Rating and Dagong Global Credit Rating (Dagong Global) have declined considerably, while the AUROC of the other five CARs have changed just slightly. In terms of predictive accuracy, we evaluated whether the average one-year default rate with respect to each rating level is consistent with the expectations. The findings indicate that China Bond Rating, CSCI Pengyuan and China Chengxin International Credit Rating (CCXI) are the three CRAs with good prediction accuracy, and CSCI Pengyuan has improved its predictive accuracy over the past two years. In terms of rating stability, we assessed the stability of ratings by constructing transition matrices and calculating the frequency and magnitude of the upgrades and downgrades. According to the results, CSCI Pengyuan and CCXI have higher rating stability. Compared with two years ago, Lianhe Credit Rating, Shanghai Brilliance Credit Rating and CCXI have significant increases in their one-year, two-year and three-year affirming rates, while China Bond Rating and Golden Credit Rating saw sight decreases in their the one-year affirming rates .

The Issuance of China’s Local Government Bonds is Set to Peak in June, Fueling the Country’s Proactive Fiscal Expansion

10 Jun 2022

In China, the local governments’ incremental bond issuance is expected to exceed RMB1.1 trillion in June. If revenue from local government-managed funds continues to be sluggish, the special bond ceiling could be lifted. The net financing of local government financing vehicles (LGFVs) is declining, with a potential decreasing trend in the overall hidden debt level of local governments.

Are pandemic disruptions in China bringing woes to local governments’ fiscal revenue?

23 May 2022

The coronavirus pandemic is currently affecting China’s economy, with bigger gaps emerging among provincial regions’ economic development. In the first four months ended April 2022, a total of 29 provincial regions in China reported coronavirus confirmed cases in their jurisdictions. Among these, the cumulative confirmed cases of Jilin and Shanghai surpassed 10,000, while Guangdong, Shandong and Fujian among seven other provinces reported more than 1,000 cumulative confirmed cases. At present, the local coronavirus pandemic continues to evolve in China with uncertainties ahead, hence many local governments are concurrently facing challenges in executing the prevention and control of the pandemic. Those regions with worse local pandemic situations are projected to experience greater pressure on their economic growth this year, in our view. In the short term, the tax refund initiative is curbing local governments’ fiscal revenue, but long-term stability is expected.

Pengyuan International is awarded the “Public Finance Rating Agency of The Year (2021) - China” by DMI

17 May 2022

Pengyuan International is pleased to announce that we have been awarded “The Best Rating Agency of the Year" by CSCI Tecnology Co., Limited, or known as DMI. The voting committee is composed of senior investors with an average of more than 10 years from public funds, banks, securities companies, asset management companies, hedge funds and other fields. DMI is a market leading vertical credit analysis data terminal focusing on China's onshore and offshore bond markets, providing primary market issuance, secondary market quotation, LGFV and real estate in-depth analysis, aiming at providing investment decision-making support for institutional investors and debt capital market teams.

Chinese LGFV offshore bonds see big uptick as SBLC prevails

05 May 2022

By the end of April 2022,the amount of offshore bonds issued by Chinese local government financing vehicles (LGFVs) had surged by 152% year on year. The average issue yield of LGFVs’ offshore bonds continues to decline, extending its advantage over that of LGFVs’ onshore bonds. While direct issuance has been the predominant structure for issuing offshore LGFV bonds, SBLC-backed issuance is becoming more common. The LGFVs from Zhejiang, Shandong and Jiangsu provinces have accounted for over 40% of LGFV offshore bond issuance for the past two years, suggesting a regional concentration in the market.

China strives to reduce fiscal strength discrepancies among local governments

18 Mar 2022

The surging fiscal transfer from the central government is expected to bolster the budgetary revenue of local governments this year, particularly those with weaker fiscal self-sufficiency. The central government is walking a fine line between setting forth the proactive fiscal expansion and increasing the local governments’ leverage. Instead of ramping up debts, the central government has higher inclination to rely on the stated-owned assets and enterprises to meet its fiscal needs.

Announcement: Pengyuan International is awarded the “Public Finance Rating Agency of The Year (2021) - China” by the Asset

04 Mar 2022

Pengyuan International is pleased to announced that we have been awarded with the “Public Finance Rating Agency of The Year (2021) - China” at the Triple A Rating Agency of the Year Awards” is hosted by The Asset, a globally renowned financial publication and media. Based on a set of well-rounded global rating methodology and a proprietary economic and fiscal database, Pengyuan International has a profound and extensive practice in the public finance space of the capital market. On unsolicited basis, Pengyuan has published 23 credit ratings of global scale on Chinese provincial local governments, as well as multiple offshore RMB-denominated bonds they issued. Furthermore, Pengyuan has completed over a thousand internal credit estimates on Chinese local government of various levels. It is these continuous analytical efforts made possible for Pengyuan international to play a unique and value-adding role in global capital market, especially in the Chinese government credits and government-related entities space.

Reinforcing Proactive Fiscal Approaches Unlikely to Strain Chinese Local Governments’ Credit Profiles in 2022

16 Feb 2022

Under the material economic downward pressure, Chinese local governments (LGs) are undertaking increasingly important responsibilities to drive the local economy, leveraging on the reinforcing fiscal measures and debt raises in 2022. The slowing economic growth and the constant tax and fee cuts tend to restrain the revenue collection of LGs, and the bleak property market is yet to revive, sapping the LGs’ land sales. Fortunately, the fiscal retrenchment and economic recovery in 2021 had alleviated most LGs’ debt and deficit pressure and entrenched their creditworthiness, which had paved the way for the fiscal stimulus in 2022. The loosening monetary conditions and the potentially increasing debt ceilings will facilitate the LGs in accessing the external financing and securing the liquidity. Therefore, despite the negative conditions and lumping uncertainties ahead, we set a stable outlook for LGs’ creditworthiness in 2022.

Chinese Local Governments’ Creditworthiness Shows Improvement in 2021 Despite Headwinds

11 Nov 2021

Buoyed by the recovery of economy and budgetary revenue, local governments’ budgetary strength has been reinforced. In general, less proactive fiscal policy has curbed the expansion of infrastructure construction in many regions and eased their deficit pressure. Most local governments are possessing more debt raising capacities and better liquidity positions than 2020. We believe the creditworthiness of local governments has generally improved compared to a year ago but the divergence among them has widened. On the flip side, uncertainties are accumulating amid the resurgence of pandemic this winter which may wreck some provinces’ economy, while the power shortage is restricting factory production in high power consuming regions, and the depressing real estate market could be insidiously spreading to other economic sectors. The expected enhancement of the fixed-asset investment (FAI) in the fourth quarter may weigh on the local government’s budgetary balance. Nonetheless, we do believe the entrenched credit profiles as well as prudent and conscientious fiscal and economic measures should provide the local governments with greater capability to withstand the potential downside risk than 2020.

China’s Property Market at ‘Darkest Moment Before the Dawn’

26 Oct 2021

Chinese property developers are facing increasing refinancing pressure amid continued credit control, tight regulatory oversight and weak sentiment in the offshore capital markets. Typically, property developers have various financing channels, including loans, onshore or offshore corporate bonds, mezzanine debt, equity financing, project financing, supply chain financing and asset-backed securities. Although the offshore bond issuance only contributes a small portion to the total Chinese property developers financing, the reported negative credit events from the offshore markets have broadly influenced the Chinese property financing. Many Chinese property developers have encountered refinancing risks as credit channels tighten and investor confidence weakened.

Southbound Bond Connect can help Mainland investors to further realise the practical value of global ratings on Chinese offshore bonds

05 Oct 2021

HONG KONG, 30 September 2021. Following the introduction of Northbound Trading in 2017, Southbound Bond Connect was officially launched on 24th September, marking another milestone to promote mutual access between Hong Kong and Mainland bond markets. The new platform is expected to speed up the opening of the Mainland financial markets, to diversify investment channels for Mainland institutional investors and to promote the vibrant development of the Hong Kong bond market. Southbound Bond Connect is a platform designated for Mainland institutional investors to invest in the Hong Kong bond market without altering the current policy framework, through existing exchanges and clearing institutions in Mainland and Hong Kong. Eligible bonds are those issued offshore and tradable in the Hong Kong bond market. Cash bond trading will be available in the initial phase. Eligible Mainland investors are designated tentatively as 41 banking financial institutions on the list of the 2020 PBC primary dealers for open market operations, Qualified Domestic Institutional Investors (QDIIs) and Renminbi Qualified Domestic Institutional Investors (RQDIIs). 13 market makers for Southbound Bond Connect designated by the Hong Kong Monetary Authority (HKMA) will act as trading counterpart tentatively. Similar to Northbound Trading, Southbound Bond Connect adopts the internationally-accepted nominee holding structure. At present, the annual quota and daily quota for Southbound Bond Connect are equivalent to RMB500 billion and RMB20 billion respectively. The People's Bank of China (PBC) will adjust the quotas based on the circumstances of cross-border capital flows.

Pengyuan International releases industry credit guidelines for global automobile manufacturers

12 Aug 2021

Pengyuan International has today released its Industry Credit Guidelines for Global Automobile Manufacturers. In comparison with the Request-for-Comment version of the Guidelines, we have mainly made a few changes: to begin with, PENGYUAN has introduced additional auto manufacturing sector-specific macro environment factors when assessing the macro environment risk. Secondly, PENGYUAN has acknowledged young new energy vehicle (NEV) OEMs that add to the auto manufacturing industry’s concentration risk, environmental, social and governance (ESG) factors and technological evolution that add to the entry barrier risk, as well as the increasingly popular ride hailing and car sharing concept that add to the growth perspective risk. Thirdly, when assessing an auto OEM’s Operations Profile, PENGYUAN has acknowledged product reviews and order backlogs as gauges of the OEM’s Products factor, quantifiable R&D metrics, such as R&D expense ratio, as additional gauges of the Technology factor, and ESG events as additional gauges of the Brand Image & Market Share (BIMS) factor.

Combing through the creditworthiness of prefecture-level governments in China

06 Aug 2021

There are currently 333 prefecture-level regions in the mainland China and the prefecture-level governments are the direct or indirect controllers of over 1000 local government financing vehicles (LGFVs) that are the active participants in both onshore and offshore bond markets. In this report, we assess the creditworthiness of 327 out of 333 prefecture-level governments in China for which sufficient data are available. Our key views: (1) The institutional framework of prefecture-level governments is overall solid and largely predictable and stable. (2) The creditworthiness of prefecture-level governments is generally sound. (3) Significant economic imbalance continues to exist across prefecture-level regions. (4) Fiscal pressure is mounting on prefecture-level governments with widening disparities. (5) In most prefecture-level governments, debt burden is increasing but remains manageable, and liquidity is generally sufficient.

Fiscally strong regions’ LGFVs less impacted by recent tightening fundraising policies

19 Jul 2021

The China Banking and Insurance Regulatory Commission (CBIRC) recently issued a directive on precautions and resolutions in relations to hidden debt risks from local governments. 《银行保险机构进一步做好地方政府隐性债务风险防范化解工作的指导意见》(银保监发 [2021]15号). The CBIRC stated prohibitions for these financial institutions, including banks and insurance companies, on any new working capital loans to borrowers who have presumed hidden debt from local governments, while at the same time prioritise resolving hidden debt with short durations, high interest rates and debts with strong repayment expectations. According to the guidelines, financial institutions are required to strengthen their compliance and due diligence procedures, and shall not in any form increase the hidden debt burden of local governments. It also demands the financial institutions to properly resolve existing hidden debt, and shall not expect any unconditional bailouts from the local governments. Overall, we see the recent series of tightening measures imposed by various regulatory bodies help to prevent any system-wide defaults by LGFVs, as the oversight of systemic risk remains a priority for the regulators. Current offshore USD bonds by LGFVs are much smaller in terms of outstanding issuance amount than those from the onshore markets, and refinancing risks should therefore be controllable. We continue to believe any high-profile defaults by LGFVs are unlikely.

Introduction of infrastructure REITs to provide more financing channels

12 Jul 2021

On 2 July 2021, the National Development and Reform Commission (NDRC) issued the "Notice on the Infrastructure Real Estate Investment Trust Funds (REITs) Pilot " (《关于进一步做好基础设施领域不动产投资信托基金 (REITs)试点工作的通知》). In this notice, the scope of the pilot infrastructure REITs’ underlying assets was expanded by adding social housing and parking lots. The expansion of scope was introduced shortly after the first batch of infrastructure REITs’ debut trading on 21 June 2021, with five on the Shanghai Stock Exchange and four on the Shenzhen Stock Exchange. We expect the scope of infrastructure REITs to expand to more sectors in the longer term. In our view, the challenge for the further development of the publicly listed REITs in China will be related to the establishment of relevant legislation system and taxation policies.

Measuring the Creditworthiness of China’s Corporates Using a Global Rating Scale

28 Jun 2021

China has overtaken Japan as the world's second largest bond market, with a market capitalisation of over USD17.70 trillion. The offshore Chinese bond market has also grown to become the largest in the international bond market across the Asia-Pacific region, with USD961 billion in outstanding bonds (excluding sovereign bonds). Foreign participation in China's bond market, on the other hand, remains extremely limited. While foreign investors' access to China's onshore bond market has significantly improved, foreign investors continue to primarily hold sovereign and quasi-sovereign bonds. Among other things, the absence of globally comparable credit ratings creates a barrier for many international investors who rely on global scale ratings to guide their investment and risk management decisions.

Methodology: National Scale Ratings Mapping

18 May 2021

HONG KONG, 18 May 2021. Pengyuan International (PENGYUAN) has today published its criteria for national scale ratings mapping. This criteria article describes PENGYUAN’s approach in mapping national scale ratings from PENGYUAN’s global scale ratings. National scale ratings are opinions on the creditworthiness of an obligor or obligation relative to other obligors and obligations within a single country. The main purpose of assigning national scale ratings is to provide a greater credit differentiation among obligors and obligations in countries whose country- specific risks result in using only a partial section of the rating scale and ratings that are clustered within a few rating categories. PENGYUAN’s national scale ratings are derived based on country-specific mapping tables that determine the relationship between our global and national scale ratings. To distinguish from global scale ratings, national scale ratings will have a suffix to denote the country (e.g., ‘AAAru’ for Russia). PENGYUAN’s national scale ratings contain both long-term and short-term scale ratings. Credit Watch and Outlooks are assigned in the same manner as we do for our global scale ratings.

Property Firm’s ABS Accounting Treatment and its Impact

19 Apr 2021

Regulatory oversight of the Chinese property industry has been considerably tightened since 2016, with traditional financing channels of these companies coming under more strict controls. Against this backdrop, the issuance of asset-backed securities (ABS) products in the Chinese property industry has accelerated substantially, buoyed by the increase in financing demand from companies in the sector. As of 29 December 2020, the accumulated value of ABS from Chinese property companies exceeded RMB1.4 trillion, becoming one of the important alternative financing tools. Property ABS can be broken down into different categories according to their underlying assets, including supply chain ABS, mortgage balance ABS, property fee ABS, commercial mortgage-backed securities (“CMBS”) and quasi real estate investment trusts (“quasi-REITs”). Different ABS categories are subject to different accounting rules. For example, the supply chain ABS only needs to adjust the liability account items, while the property fee ABS, CMBS and the mortgage balance ABS are classified as secured debt financing, corresponding to the increased bank deposits and liabilities. Quasi-REITs are the only type of property ABS that could be classified as an off-balance sheet item. The on-balance sheet quasi-REITs represent an additional item of the issuer’s liabilities.

A Review of LGFVs’ Risk Characteristics Based on Non-standard Product Defaults

08 Apr 2021

China’s local government financing vehicles (LGFVs) have reported more cases of non-standard product defaults since 2018 after the government strengthened the regulatory efforts and oversight over the sector’s financing. According to the statistics, China has seen 90 non-standard product defaults by LGFVs involving 117 entities (including both issuers and guarantors) from January 2018 to November 2020. A large number of default cases happened in provinces including Guizhou, Yunnan, Inner Mongolia and Sichuan, with higher proportion of defaults by county-level LGFVs and LGFVs with no bond issuance record. In addition, it is worth noting that when a prefecture-level LGFV reports defaults, it is typical that the lower-level LGFVs under its jurisdiction may have already reported defaults several times.

Is the creditworthiness of Chinese local governments raising concerns in 2021?

08 Feb 2021

For the outlook of Chinese local governments (LGs) in 2021, we have adopted a cautiously optimistic view over the creditworthiness of LGs in China for this year. This is buoyed by our projection that the rapid economic recovery of China will continue in 2021 and the deficit and debt level of the LGs will gradually stabilise. However, the normalising fiscal strategies and liquidity condition will expose risks in some low-level governments and the tail risk should not be neglected.

Evaluating the Performance of Credit Ratings Using Default Data and Quantitative Measures

25 Nov 2020

A credit rating is a forward-looking analytical opinion on an obligor or obligation’s overall creditworthiness, based on the principles of independence, objectivity and impartiality. It mainly focuses on the obligor’s willingness and capacity to fulfill its financial commitments. As one of the infrastructures in the bond market, credit ratings play an important role in revealing credit risks, assisting market pricing and improving market efficiency. However, a credit rating will be effective only if its performance has been validated and accepted by market participants. To improve the quality and recognition of credit ratings, a set of validation techniques should be established to provide reasonable performance measures for credit ratings. Credit spread significance test is a commonly used validation tool of credit ratings performance in China, mainly due to an absence of historical default data in China's bond market. Data unavailability makes it infeasible to directly evaluate the performance of credit ratings using default data. Moreover, defects are observed in both hypothesis and accuracy of the test. In order to validate the credit ratings performance accurately, the market needs a set of reliable validation techniques and measures which can directly reflect the accuracy of credit risk measurement. Given the accumulation of default data in China’s bond market in recent years, the quantitative method using default data to evaluate the performance of credit ratings should be implemented more widely.

Pengyuan International cordially invite you to provide opinion to HKGFA on Hong Kong Green and Sustainable Finance landscape.

30 Sep 2020

As a member of Hong Kong Green Finance Association (HKGFA), Pengyuan International cordially invite you to provide opinion to HKGFA on Hong Kong Green and Sustainable Finance landscape. Please click the link to fill out the survey:

Announcement: CSCI Pengyuan, the group company of Pengyuan International’s Completed CRA Registration with the PBoC

The Central Sub-branch of the People’s Bank of China in Shenzhen announced on August 25 2020 that, it has completed the CRA Registration of CSCI Pengyuan Credit Rating Limited (Unified Social Credit Code: 914403001922170270, Legal Entity Identifier: 300300E4000144000026). The registration is conducted in accordance with “Interim Measures for the Administration of the Credit Rating Industry”, which is jointly released by the People's Bank of China (PBoC), the National Development and Reform Commission (NDRC), the Ministry of Finance (MoF) and the China Securities Regulatory Commission (CSRC) on November 26 2019.

Announcement: Successions and Appointments

August 21 2020, Hong Kong. Pengyuan International is delighted to announce the following successions and appointments on the executive level, with immediate effect: Dr. Ke Chen assumes the role of Chief Analytics Officer, and a member of the Board of Directors. Mr. Tony Tong has recently resigned from Chief Analytics Officer for personal reasons. Mr. Terry Zhang assumes the post of Head of Global Strategy and Business Management, and a member of the Board of Directors. Mr. Zhang is also assuming several executive duties. Mr. Jonathan Hu has recently resigned from Chief Executive Officer for personal reasons. In years to come, Pengyuan International will continue to undertake the group development strategy and spare no effort to advance itself globally, especially in areas of rating analytics, internal controls, global compliance, talent reserves, as well as accessibilities to diversified credit data, so as to better serve the investors around the world with global credit ratings of premium qualities. Pengyuan International would also like to thank Jonathan and Tony for their great efforts in the past few years, which laid solid foundation for the future development of Pengyuan International. We wish Jonathan and Tony all the success in their future endeavors.

Request for Comments: Industry Credit Guidelines for Global Automobile Manufacturers

17 Aug 2020

Pengyuan International has today published the industry credit guidelines for global automobile manufacturers for public consultation. These criteria will be effective immediately on the date of final publication, and we intend to complete the review of all affected ratings, if any, within six months thereafter. We expect no impact on our current rating portfolio. We would appreciate comments on these criteria from investors and other market participants. The request-for-comment version of the criteria and analyst contact details are available via the “Preview” and “Download” button on this page.

Debt analysis of prefecture-level city local governments in Zhejiang and Jiangsu provinces

03 Aug 2020

This research focuses on the government debt (including direct debt and hidden debt) of 11 prefecture-level local governments (LGs) in Zhejiang province (AA-/Stable) and 13 prefecture-level LGs in Jiangsu province (A+/Stable), and we demonstrate the debt burden and debt features of these prefecture-level city LGs. We believe these prefecture-level city LGs as a whole have strong ability to support debt repayment, backed by their advanced economy and solid budgetary revenue. The variance of debt level among Zhejiang's prefecture-level LGs to be smaller and their overall debt level to be lower than the peers in Jiangsu province. The assessment reveals that hidden debt accounted for more than half of the broad debt in most of the prefecture-level LGs in Jiangsu, whose hidden debt burden were generally heavier than their peers in Zhejiang. Meanwhile, the debt growth varies larger among prefecture-level LGs in Zhejiang than in Jiangsu and we also see higher growth in debt-to-GDP ratio in the cities of Zhejiang. Our calculation shows that both average maturity of newly issued LG bonds and average residual maturity of outstanding LG bonds in Jiangsu province were lower than those of Zhejiang province.

An Introduction on the Methods of Extrapolating the Static Pool Data (Chinese)

07 Jul 2020

When analyzing the credit risk of securitization transactions with a homogeneous and well-diversified portfolio, such as consumer loan ABS and auto loan ABS, static pool analysis approach is typically applied to estimate the portfolio’s default risk (measured by cumulative default rate) using the static pool data provided by the originator. A static pool is a group of assets generated during a specific calendar period, typically a month, quarter or year (referred to as the “vintage” of the data). In general, not all of the static pools provided by the originator have gone through the entire life cycle. For incomplete static pools, the estimates of the cumulative default rates are performed using extrapolation techniques. Specifically, we first calculate the cumulative default rate of each vintage at each observation period, and then project forward the default rates of incomplete vintages through the extrapolation method.

Seeing Through Frosted Glass: Assessing Chinese Local Governments’ Creditworthiness

29 Jun 2020

We employ a top-down rating approach to assess Chinese local governments’ credit profiles as we believe it better reflects with the nation’s vertically integrated governing structure. The higher level of an LG, the more power it possesses to shape intra-governmental relations, mobilise external financial resources and the more state-owned assets and enterprises it may control. Higher-Level LGs (HLG), such as at provincial level, should have better creditworthiness than a municipal level LG and so forth. LGs’ fiscal revenue growth has been muted in recent years. They have started feeling this deficit and Covid-19 could make things worse. LGs’ debts have expanded rapidly with the direct debt growth outpacing hidden debt. The difference in creditworthiness among prefecture-level city LGs can be huge and the gap is even wider among lower district and county LGs.

Identifying and Picking a Quality LGFV

28 May 2020

Local governments in China started actively setting up local government financing vehicles (LGFVs) after they were barred from direct borrowing under a 1994 budget law. However, each LGFV operates within the jurisdiction of its respective local government, and do not directly compete against each other. Under a typical LGFV structure, a local government injects assets, usually in the form of land or cash, to capitalise a legal entity that will subsequently raise funds via bank loans, bonds, or the shadow banking market, and undertakes infrastructure investments for public welfare and/or primary land development in its coverage area. In this article, we try to analyse the common characteristics of a quality LGFV.

Electric cars development in Europe likely to see a policy tailwind

26 May 2020

The possible move to exempt Value-Added Tax (VAT) levied on zero-emission vehicles (ZEV) proposed recently by the European Commission (EC) would create a strong push for Europe’s consumption on electric vehicles (EV). We estimate the retail price reduction for purchasing EV due to this VAT exemption would be around 21%. Given the fact that European region is the second-largest EV market globally – only trailing China with a compound annual growth rate of 44% in volume from 2014 – 2019, the removal of VAT on EV – should take effect eventually – in our view will accelerate the adoption of electric cars in the region as the VAT on EV is, in general, far greater than that for gasoline vehicles.

China set to metamorphosize with the transition toward electric vehicles

13 May 2020

With strong manufacturing base in battery and battery components - the core parts in electric vehicles (EV), China has evolved to be sufficiently competitive in the global battery manufacturing battleground against Korea and Japan. We believe embracing electrification is strategically vital for China to reverse its lagging position in the global automobile industry as fuel-engine cars would be endangered by the substitution from EV in the future. However, the investment in electrification will in the short run negatively weigh on the credit profile of companies from our samples, but will pay off in the long run. Noticeably, debt level for these companies, in our view, will further increase thanks to the highly capital-intensive nature for EV-related investment. We expect sampled companies in Chinese battery and battery components manufacturing industries will stand out with a higher ROIC in the longer term as they are more valued-added in the EV supply chain.

Are Ratings All the Same? – A Comparative Analysis of Domestic and Global Ratings

11 May 2020

We select samples of China’s corporate issuers and asset-backed securities (ABS) with domestic and global credit ratings to compare and analyse the differences in the two rating scales and the reasons behind such differences. While domestic and global ratings on asset-backed securities (ABS) products are relatively similar, the ratings on corporate issuers of domestic Chinese CRAs are 8.69 notches higher on average than those of global CRAs. Compared with domestic ratings, global ratings demonstrate more significant variations in different firm types and industries, and a better discriminatory power. The results of the Receiver Operating Characteristics (ROC) curve analyses show that global ratings are superior to domestic ratings in terms of ranking power for credit risks, but domestic ratings still provide valuable information on credit risks.

Pengyuan International has published its Global Rating Criteria for Corporate CDOs

16 Apr 2020

The Global Rating Criteria for Corporate CDOs describe our approach in evaluating the creditworthiness of corporate Collateralized Debt Obligations (CDOs), including transactions of corporate loan portfolios, Collateralized Loan Obligations (CLOs), and transactions of corporate bond portfolios, Collateralized Bond Obligations (CBOs). It provides our analytical framework for rating cash flow CDOs backed by portfolios of corporate debt and synthetic CDOs referring portfolios of corporate obligations (Corporate CDOs). These criteria may also be applied to assess other transactions that share similarities with Corporate CDOs, such as transactions backed by portfolios of sovereign securities, municipal debt and project finance loans.

See China’s ABS Through the Lens of Domestic Structured Finance Ratings

27 Apr 2020

This report attempts to bridge the gaps in understanding China’s ABS market by studying the rating transitions of the structured finance ratings issued by domestic rating agencies in China. We start with a review of the unique market structures of China’s ABS markets before analysing the characteristics of the structured finance rating transitions in China. We further examine the rating performance of the fee income rights ABS, which is a distinctive asset sector in China’s ABS market. Moreover, we provide comparisons between the corporate and structured finance rating transitions and attempt to explain the findings.

COVID-19’s Impact May be More Profound and Prolonged than Expected

22 Apr 2020

As the COVID-19 crisis continues to wreak havoc across global economies, we now believe that the pandemic’s impact on China may be more profound and prolonged than our expectations back in February. Our increased caution stems from the sharp contraction in the economic activity of China’s key trading partners, slower than expected resumption of work and production domestically, as well as the more restrained policy responses and support by China’s government so far. In view of the risks these emerging trends pose, we have revised down our 2020 real GDP forecast for China from 3.1% in our prior severe scenario to a base-case estimate of 1.5–2.0%. We have also revised a number of other macro forecasts which, on aggregate, paint a more challenging picture for China’s public finances, corporates, and households for the remainder of the year.

Wealth management regulations likely to be postponed

26 Mar 2020

We anticipate that the Chinese regulators will take an accommodative approach in pushing through reforms in the wealth management product (WMP) market in the remainder of 2020. This will give the joint-stock banks (JSBs) a much-needed buffer amid a difficult environment, in our view. The new regulations – originally targeted for full implementation by the end of the year – call for fundamental changes in the way WMPs are designed, sold and priced. While the banks have made significant progress in improving their market structures since 2018, a few hurdles remain.

COVID-19 is not destructive to Chinese LG's creditworthiness yet, but downside risk is mounting

4 Mar 2020

The COVID-19 epidemic is likely to hurt some provinces’ economies more than others. Hubei is the most negatively impacted, while Henan, Anhui, Jiangxi and Hunan may also come under significant pressure. Guangdong and Zhejiang have more infected cases than peers but their economies are resilient to absorb such external shock. With the aid of the central government, provincial governments may maintain their creditworthiness in the near-term. But if our pessimistic or severe assumptions materialize, there may be pressure on their ratings in 2020-2021. As of today, Pengyuan International has rated 15 provincial-level mainland Chinese governments.

China’s auto-loan ABS market 2020: characteristics and outlook (Chinese)

27 Feb 2020

HONG KONG, 27 February 2020. Pengyuan International has released one research report, “China’s Auto Loan ABS Market 2020: Characteristics and Outlook”.This research report studies the creditworthiness of auto loan asset-backed securities (ABS) issued in China Interbank Bond Market based on the analysis of the ABS transactions’ underlying asset quality, note performance, transaction structure, counterparties, and legal structure.

March marks a critical point for China’s economy

26 Feb 2020

In our view, the full-year impacts of the COVID-19 epidemic may be determined by economic activity in the month of March. While we remain cautiously optimistic on the economy’s resilience in 2020, we present three likely scenarios that may materialize in the remainder of the year. These scenarios inform our views on individual corporate sectors and we will continue to review our macro assumptions as new data points become available.