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Shanghai Composite

Financial Media: I

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With the growth of web and blogging, there are more and more financial resouces we can turn to: we are not limited to the good old newspaper for stock prices, volume anymore. Don’t laugh at me, ten years ago I did precisely that in Shanghai. But the conveniece of data access does not come at no cost. One thing I noticed from my own behavior change is “overflow of mis-information”. Let me explain.

I remember a well known overseas Chinese web site started out with attention getting (not tasteful) news title and porn, things one would not like his/her kids to see. The motivations: attention, advertisment dollar and profit. In this “post newspaper and Yahoo”, “google and youtube are the kings” era, people are living a fast pace society, attention of pentential customers are more and more scare. The news editors/reporters are fighting for this, financial news is no exception.

Moral Responsibilty of news producer
As you may know, Chinese domestic stock market crashed lately. Shanghai composite index went from last Oct. highs of 6,000 to today’s 3,300. I think the media, the so called “experts” (from Jim Rogers to Yang Bai Wan) are also responsible for the bubble and bust in Chinese market, along with the regulatory, the mutual funds, and the naive Shan Hu (individual investors), etc.

Let’s look at one cause of current crash: the over price of PetroChina (601857, PTR, 0857) IPO and subsequent free fall. Remember at the time the “Asia’s most profitable company” coverage is all over the media, the opening price was 48 Yuan, and many individual investors and mutal fund bought into this idea.

It’s morally wrong for the media and (…) to get grandma and grandpa’s life saving into 601857 (at 48 Yuan per share). The goverment did a lot “risk education” through news media, amid the volatility and risk of the stock market. But all these are drown out in the “Asian’s most valuable company” propganda.

Next, I will talk about the responsibilty of individual investors on consuming the financial news.

Appendix: news source I read (some links available, check sidebar)
English: Bloomberg, PR Newswire (both via. Google news), Reuters, AP, Business Wire, Barrons, Forbes, Kiplinger Personal Finance

Chinese: Caijing, Capital Weekly (Zheng Yuan Zhou Kan, subscription needed), 21st Century Business Herald.

The sources I will be careful: all the newsletters claims to make you fast money, CNBC, thestreet.com, etc.

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