The general assumption is that China is doing fine, thank you very much. I have a friend that is spending more and more time in China. I was totally unable to convince him that China has issues. As an attorney, my guess is that he will do well no matter what.
But for the average resident, how bad is China?
Latest research figures carried out by the Bank of America Corp. are set to rock the economies around the world once again. Has China been hiding the real state of its economic data? It would seem that the PRC hasn’t been quite as honest as it might have us all believe! According to the Bank of America Corp., the Chinese trade surplus that was meant to stand at some $61 billion turns out to be a meager mere tenth of that so far this year.
Another problem is that Chinese investors have this odd idea that empty apartments are a good investment.
A recent CBS 60 Minutes report in the US exposed dozens of new cities in China sitting empty—with the apartments snapped up as investments by the nation's wealthy middle class, then sitting empty as the owners fail to find tenants who can meet the rent.
Financial experts fear the ghost town explosion will lead to a housing bubble burst, following China's real estate boom which came after the government changed its policy 15 years ago and allowed people to buy their homes.
The middle class saw real estate as a solid investment, more stable than the share market and offering better returns than the banks.
This is just plain crazy. I know from first-hand experience that empty real estate is a depreciating asset. This will not end well.
I have been talking about various kinds of toast. Japan is toast. Europe is toast. Now China has joined that august breakfast of champions, they are toast as well. Is the US toast? That I will address very soon.