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US Treasury Debunks Rumours About Blocking Chinese Firms on US Stock Exchange

The US has no current plans to block Chinese companies from listing on US stock exchanges, according to a Bloomberg report that cited a US treasury official. Treasury spokeswoman Monica Crowley told the publication: “The administration is not contemplating blocking Chinese companies from listing shares on U.S. stock exchanges at this time.”

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US President Donald Trump’s Administration has reportedly been seeking leverage in trade talks with China over the past week after the two countries recently implemented steep tariffs on billions in each other’s goods. One strategy that the Administration is considering is a limit on US investors’ portfolio flows into Chinese firms.

The talk of delisting Chinese companies that are publicly traded in US markets caused significant jitters last week. Leading US-listed Chinese firms including Alibaba and Baidu saw their shares slip significantly. In addition to delistings, the Administration is also reportedly considering a limit on US citizens’ exposure to China’s economy via US pension funds and caps on US-managed funds’ exposure to Chinese companies.

The discussions have involved multiple government divisions including the US Treasury and the National Economic Council. Trump aides and advisors including Peter Navarro and Steve Bannon are reportedly behind the strategy, which is only one among a broad range of US-China options being considered.

The Chinese investment limit option is being pushed under the premise that Chinese companies have weak governance that expose US investors to potential fraud. Additionally, some in the Administration say that the tight relationship between China’s Communist government and public companies exposes US investors to the country’s political leadership and effectively helps to finance their strength.

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