Mainland IPOs may set record

Category:[world] [BIZCHINA] [News]
Chinese mainland companies are expected to raise a record amount of money this year in initial public offerings, as they shrug off declines in the key stock index, Ernst & Young LLP said.

Listings on Shanghai's yuan-denominated A-share market may almost double to 280 billion yuan (US$36.7 billion) in 2007, from last year's 146.3 billion yuan, according to an estimate by the New York-based accounting firm.

The "market volatility" in the mainland stock market "won't have a big impact on companies' listing plans," said Ernst & Young's China IPO head Terence Ho yesterday in Shanghai. "Chinese mainland companies have much more desire to list now than they did five years ago."

The mainland's key CSI 300 index trades at an average of 41.8 times reported earnings, more than double the 16 times average on Hong Kong's Hang Seng Index, enabling firms to raise more funds. As many as 40 mainland companies are traded in both Hong Kong and the mainland, where the stocks are priced higher than their Hong Kong issues by between 3.5 percent and eight times, according to Bloomberg News's analytics.

China Mobile, CNOOC Ltd and other Hong Kong-traded mainland companies are planning to sell yuan-denominated A shares, which may almost double the amount of capital raised in 2007, Ho said.

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