John Foley is Reuters Breakingviews' China editor. Based in Beijing, he writes on China’s economy and financial markets. John established Breakingviews’ Hong Kong bureau in 2009, and previously wrote on mergers and acquisitions, capital markets and consumer goods in London. Before joining Breakingviews in 2004, John worked as a copywriter for a London-based advertising agency. John read English Literature at Exeter College, Oxford. Follow John on Twitter @johnsfoley
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Though it hasn’t been slower since 2009, the pace of expansion in the world’s second-biggest economy is still rapid enough to avert the need for a humiliating stimulus. The big exception is real estate, where some kind of meddling to ease a funding crunch looks unavoidable.
The country’s dueling financial watchdogs are undeniably smart. But as shadow banking runs amok, they have limited tools to fight problems they didn’t create. Some reforms are beyond their power, others are tied up in red tape. It undermines the theory that China is crisis-proof.
The e-commerce group is lending one of its founders $1 billion to invest in a digital TV company with which Alibaba has signed a partnership. The deal offers a glimpse of the way tech company insiders mix public and private interests. It’s a red flag for future investors.
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