Asia markets tentative ahead of Opec meeting

Wednesday 2.30am GMT Overview Markets across Asia were treading cautiously on Wednesday, following mild overnight gains for Wall Street, a weakening of the US dollar and as investors turned their attention to a meeting between Opec members later today. What to watch Oil prices are in focus ahead of Wednesday’s Opec meeting in Vienna. The […]

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Banks, Financial

RBS emerges as biggest failure in tough UK bank stress tests

Royal Bank of Scotland has emerged as the biggest failure in the UK’s annual stress tests, forcing the state-controlled lender to present regulators with a new plan to bolster its capital position by at least £2bn. Barclays and Standard Chartered also failed to meet some of their minimum hurdles in the toughest stress scenario ever […]

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Barclays: life in the old dog yet

Barclays, a former basket case of British banking, is beginning to look inspiringly mediocre. The bank has failed Bank of England stress tests less resoundingly than Royal Bank of Scotland. Investors believe its assets are worth only 10 per cent less than their book value, judging from the share price. Although Barclays’s legal team have […]

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Currencies, Equities

Scary movie sequel beckons for eurozone markets

Just as horror movies can spook fright nerds more than they expect, so political risk is sparking heightened levels of anxiety among seasoned investors. Investors caught out by Brexit and Donald Trump are making better preparations for political risk in Europe, plotting a route to the exit door if the unfolding story of French, German […]

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Dollar rises as markets turn eyes to Opec

European bourses are mirroring a tentative Asia session as the dollar continues to be supported by better US economic data and investors turn their attention to a meeting between Opec members. Sentiment is underpinned by US index futures suggesting the S&P 500 will gain 3 points to 2,207.3 when trading gets under way later in […]

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Categorized | Property

China mulls extension of contentious property leases

Posted on November 28, 2016

China’s leaders are pondering how to solve a simmering problem which is increasingly worrying the country’s home owners – what to do when decades-long private leases on land expire.

All mainland Chinese land is state-owned, but use rights for periods ranging from 20 to 70 years have been granted since the 1990s.

The low end of that range came to national attention in April, when the eastern city of Wenzhou told local homeowners who held 20-year usage rights that they had to pay a third of their homes’ value to renew them.

That sparked an outcry from middle-class families across the country who have poured their savings into property, the ultimate fate of which has never been fully resolved under Chinese law.

The central government’s powerful State Council is researching how to extend usage rights for urban land, according to an official dispatch by the official Xinhua news agency which provided little detail on what measures might be adopted.

The guidelines, which state media said were published Sunday, appear to pick up on a 2007 property law which asserted land use rights could be renewed, but failed to specify how that would happen.

They also include exhortations to limit the conflicts that arise from ubiquitous government land grabs, as well as calls to grant greater property rights to farmers. But there was no indication Beijing intends to grant farmers full private ownership of their plots, collectively ownership of which enabled local officials to expropriate land in the first place.