Hong Kong Dominates Global Exchange Operators

Hong Kong is having a major influence on the league table of the world’s largest companies.

The China Construction Bank is outgrowing JP Morgan, Facebook and Chevron, a surge which belies the weakening Chinese economy: Exports fell 15 per cent in March, increasing the possibility to slow growth in the first quarter.

On Monday market capitalisation of Hong Kong shares closed at HK$30tn. The Hong Kong share market has beaten all competition this year outside the Chinese mainland, following increases 17.6 per cent in the past month.

The past month has seen a 20 per cent rise for CCB, China’s second largest lender by assets, resulting in a market capitalisation of US$248bn and making it the 15th biggest company on the FTSE All World index.

Tencent, an online games maker has gone up 27 per cent over the same period, making it bigger than Amazon and Samsung Electronics. Similarly, Air China has exceeded Singapore Air and Cathay Pacific combined in the wake of a 42 per cent rise.

China’s leading brokerage, Citic Securities, has leapt 45 per cent over the past month; now at $61bn its market cap is far greater than Blackstone or Credit Suisse. Furthermore, on Monday alone China Merchants Bank grew by a quarter; a market cap of $91bn placing it beyond Barclays and the Royal Bank of Canada.

Global rivals have been dwarfed by the sudden growth of the HKEx, now valued at $44bn after an injection of billions of dollars from mainland China prompting the operator to grow by 65 per cent.