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Don’t expect Beijing to provide direct support to Evergrande, says S&P


Outside the China Evergrande Group Royal Mansion residential development under construction in Beijing, China, on Friday, Sept. 17, 2021.

Bloomberg via Getty Images S&P Global Ratings says that the Chinese government won’t likely provide support directly to the developer who is in debt.| Bloomberg via Getty Images

The Chinese government is not likely to step in to give direct support to debt-ridden developer China Evergrande Group, according to S&P Global Ratings.

“We do not expect the government to provide any direct support to Evergrande,” said the S&P credit analysts in a Monday report. Beijing will only step in when there’s a widespread contagion that causes multiple developers to go under, posing a systemic risk to the economy.

According to them, “Evergrande falling apart would not result in such an outcome.”

Even in Evergrande’s home province, the developer is insignificant to Guangdong’s vast local economy — it is not too big to fail.

Fears over a potential contagion from Evergrande into the broader Chinese economy and beyond dragged down the Hang Seng index in Hong Kong by more than 3% on Monday. Globally, the sell-off was continuing.

“We believe the Chinese banking sector can digest an Evergrande default with no significant disruption, although we will be mindful of potential knock-on effects,” S&P said.

Evergrande, the most indebted global developer has amassed around $300 billion of debt. Starting Thursday, it will be making interest payments to its bonds. S&P said a “default is likely” on those payments.

In Tuesday morning trade, shares of Evergrande in Hong Kong fell about 4% — its seventh straight session of declines, though far less than the over 10% decline on Monday.

Evergrande chairman, Reuters reports Tuesday, tried to reassure investors and partners by stating that the company will meet its responsibilities.

‘Not too big to fail’

S&P analysts likened the Evergrande fallout to the case of Chinese bad debt manager Huarong, which sparked a market rout earlier this year when it failed to report earnings on time and its U.S. dollar-denominated bonds plunged.

“We don’t expect government actions to help Evergrande unless systemic stability is at risk,” S&P said. The campaign to promote financial discipline and greater property sector control would be undermined by a government bailout.

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Instead of a bailout, Beijing might facilitate negotiations negotiations and funding to ensure individual investors and homebuyers are “protected as much as possible,” the analysts said.

The government wants to let events take their course, and is open to helping. Even in Evergrande’s home province, the developer is insignificant to Guangdong’s vast local economy — it is not too big to fail.”