Stock Groups

China developer Evergrande’s debt crunch and U.S. markets: Ed Yardeni


A debt crunch involving China’s second largest properly developer has caught investors’ attention in the past week.

EvergrandeThe Shenzhen company is in danger of defaulting on approximately $300 billion worth of debt. This crisis is reminiscent of the Lehman Brothers bankruptcy that marked 13 years ago last week. The news sent shockwaves throughout global markets.

Yardeni Research president Ed Yardeni says that Evergrande won’t suffer a similar fate to the Lehman bankruptcy, which saw the credit markets and global economy collapse. He sees the event as an analogy to another event that occurred ten years earlier.

“If it’s similar to anything,  it’s similar to Long-Term Capital Management, which is the calamity that occurred in 1998 but that was dealt with very quickly by the Federal Reserve and the major banks and it didn’t have any global implications,” Yardeni told CNBC’s “Trading Nation” on Friday.

Yardeni believes that government intervention in Evergrande will prevent any contagion or collapse, just like with Long-Term Capital Management.

It is impossible to fail and the Chinese government will intervene heavily. I don’t think they’re going to save management… but it will be restructured and in a way that won’t harm the economy too much over there and won’t affect the global economy or financial markets the way Lehman did,” said Yardeni.

Even if a crisis tied to Evergrande is avoided, Yardeni does not see Chinese markets rebounding anytime soon. Yardeni says Evergrande should not be a reason to invest in the region.

Yardeni stated that if you have Chinese stock investments, there are many reasons to leave. The Chinese Communist Party, which is the head of the government, has interfered in markets and told companies how to manage their business. It’s an opportunity to just lie low. The dips in China are not something I’d be interested in buying.

Beijing has increased regulations for technology and private education over the past months. This increased scrutiny has led to a decline in their stock markets, as well as those of Chinese companies that are U.S. listed.

He adds that continued uncertainty in China may be beneficial for the U.S. market.

There are many global investors who want to make investments in countries where they feel safe, have good corporate governance, and are compliant with contract law. “I think that there may be a lot more money out there than just those who have gone international and were tempted to move to China,” he stated.

Yardeni has a 5,000 price target on the S&P 500 for the end of 2022, though he says the benchmark index could reach that level sooner. The S&P 500 closed Friday at 4,433.