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Crunch Escalates as Money Funds Rival Shadow Banks: China Credit

A doubling in China’s money-market funds in the past six months is draining bank deposits and raising the risk of financial failures during cash crunches, according to Fitch Ratings.

The assets under management of such plans surged to a record 737 billion yuan ($122 billion) on Dec. 31 from 304 billion yuan on June 30, said Roger Schneider, senior director at Fitch’s Fund and Asset Manager Rating Group. Yu’E Bao, managed by Tianhong Asset Management Co. and sold online by Alibaba Group Holding Ltd., offers an annualized return of 6.7 percent, compared with the 3 percent official one-year savings rate. Some funds are offering higher rates, with news portal Eastmoney.com marketing a product that targets 10 percent.