There is mounting speculation that Chinese firms will effectively be delisted from the main US stock exchanges such as the Dow Jones, S&P500 and Nasdaq Composites.
The proposed bill in the US, called the Holding Foreign Companies Accountable Act, would effectively delist stocks from the American exchanges that did not comply with US regulatory audits.
The bill would make foreign companies let the US authorities oversee the auditing of their financial records if they want to be on the US stock markets.
100% of American companies and most foreign firms already work in this way, but Chinese firms have tended to not comply with this in the past.
Therefore, the bill isn’t specifically focused on China, but would hit Chinese firms listed in New York harder.
What is interesting about the bill is that it is supported by the Democrats, and was rolled out by Democratic Brad Sherman of California which is a liberal state.
Moreover some interesting questions will be:
- Will Chinese firms comply with this new act if it is enacted or could they list elsewhere including at home?
- Will this signal a bigger push against China as the 2020 election approaches? In other words, could the Democrats try to “out Trump Trump” on China?
- Will US markets become slightly less international?
- If Chinese firms delist will it help the Shanghai Composite, which has been suffering for 14 years compared to most stock markets, or will it have little effect?
Watch this space.