The Shanghai Stock Exchange can be extremely volatile. Which is one reason that investors and traders are moving to the sidelines in U.S. and overseas markets today ahead of the reopening of the Shanghai exchange on Monday.
So how volatile is volatile?
The comparison is not totally compelling but it does offer a benchmark: In May 2019 when the Shanghai stock benchmark resumed trading after a holiday that had been full of negative headlines on the U.S.-China trade war, the Shanghai CompositeIndex fell almost 6% when trading resumed. Would a 6% drop produce more fear or lead to money flowing back into Chinese stocks on the theory that the worst is now over? Where and when would the People’s Bank of China step in?
Take this into account too. On the coronavirus news, the offshore yuan fell past the key level of 7 to the dollar. That will also effect buying and selling in stocks on Monday.
And adding to worries about the degree of selling on Monday: European and U.S. exchange-traded funds that invest in mainland-traded Chinese stocks have fallen amid concern over the spread of the coronavirus, Bloomberg reports, but because Chinese stock exchanges are closed, the prices of mainland-traded A shares haven’t moved. That’s created a huge gap between the market price of some ETFs and the most recent asset price of the fund’s holdings. For example, Bloomberg cites, the Lyxor China Enterprise HSCEI UCITS ETF in Paris has seen the gap increase to the most since August 2015, when China rocked financial markets with its devaluation of the yuan. No one knows what the effect of efforts of close this pricing gap will be.