Wall Street Chiefs Meet Chinese Officials Amid Market Turmoil

(Bloomberg) — Wall Street executives and top Chinese regulators plan to hold a virtual meeting to discuss topics including Beijing’s raging market crackdown on the private sector and US-China relations.

Thursday’s meeting marks a resumption of the China-US Financial Roundtable that was first convened in September 2018, according to two people familiar with the matter, who asked not to be identified because the meeting is private. The talks had faded into the background during the pandemic.

Blackstone Inc. Chairman Stephen Schwarzman, Goldman Sachs Group Inc. President John Waldron, and Mary Erdoes, chief executive officer of JPMorgan Chase & Co.’s asset & wealth management, are among those in attendance, people said. China Securities Regulatory Commission Vice Chairman Fang Xinghai, People’s Bank of China Governor Yi Gang, and Guo Shuqing, Chairman of the China Banking and Insurance Regulatory Commission, were invited from the Chinese side.

The high-level meeting comes after investors were discouraged by a regulatory attack from Beijing targeting its largest tech companies and other industries, as well as a pledge by President Xi Jinping to create “common prosperity.” Billions of dollars in potential profits are at stake for Wall Street, which is expanding in China as the country opens its financial markets to investment banks, asset managers and money managers.

There is also much at stake for China in its efforts to transform its export-dependent economy. Beijing has so far shown no signs of hesitation in its commitment to open its $54 trillion market as it seeks new investment and increasing domestic competition.

The meeting was hosted by John Thornton, President of Barrick Gold Corp. who co-chairs the roundtable with Zhou Xiaochuan, a former PBOC governor. Thornton was in Beijing last month to meet with officials including CSRC Deputy Prime Minister Liu He and Fang, famous people said.

The round table discussion is also about financial cooperation, according to an acquaintance.

Morgan Stanley also joins a representative, an acquaintance said.

Media representatives of the participating companies declined to comment.

Fang made a phone call to executives of major investment banks in July in an effort to allay market fears after Beijing suddenly wiped out profits in its private education sector.

The US and China are grappling with protracted deadlocks over issues such as market access, data security and international stock exchange listings. Securities and Exchange Commission chairman Gary Gensler last month warned hundreds of Chinese companies that have raised money in U.S. markets that they risk having their shares delisted if they don’t submit to more scrutiny.

When the roundtable was initially set up in 2018, the roundtable received a strong rebuke from then-top White House trade adviser Peter Navarro, who told Wall Street to “get out of the negotiations,” accusing them of pressured President Donald Trump. for its trade war with China.

(Updates with JPMorgan in third paragraph. Morgan Stanley in eighth.)

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