Data from CEIC compiled by the Wall Street Journal shows foreign investment in Chinese government bonds have increased substantially over the last four years. Foreign investments in bonds last month totaled roughly 1.5 trillion yuan, or around $214 billion. That’s up by over 1.25 trillion yuan from four years ago, when foreign investments in bonds was just 250 billion yuan. Investments increased dramatically in 2017 and 2018, and have continued to rise through the COVID-19 pandemic.
Investors from the U.S. and other countries have seemingly been buying Chinese bonds for their steady yields and general safety during uncertain economic times. China’s yield on a 10-year government bond has returned to pre-pandemic levels at around 3.12 percent – far outpacing other world economies like the U.S. with 0.6 percent, Japan with 0.02 percent and Germany with 0.52 percent.
Ultimately, investors are finding a safe haven with government-issued bonds from China as opposed to other bonds across the world. There still are risks, which primarily include the U.S. continuing to take economic action against China and increased volatility brought on by steadfast Hong Kong protests.