It's not just Evergrande. Smaller Chinese real estate developers are also wobbling as the cash crunch spreads.
- Chinese real estate giant Evergrande is grappling with a $300 billion debt pile.
- It's been declared to be in default by S&P Global and Fitch Ratings.
- Other Chinese developers, including Kaisa and Shimao, have suffered recent economic woes.
China's government has announced that it's stepping in to manage the debt crisis at embattled property developer Evergrande — but that doesn't mean the sector's in the clear.
The real estate giant, once China's second-largest developer by sales, is grappling with a $300 billion debt pile and in default, according to S&P Global and Fitch Ratings. It will now "actively engage" with creditors to mitigate risks and protect the parties' interests, Evergrande said in an exchange filing on Wednesday.
Evergrande's troubles have kept investors worldwide on edge as they fear its collapse could have a knock-on impact on China's real estate sector and eventually send the world into a financial crisis. China's property market accounts for a quarter of the country's$15 trillion GDP.
And a number of other Chinese developers — albeit not on the scale of Evergrande — have also been plagued by problems.
Below are some recent high-profile corporate wobbles at publicly listed Chinese property developers.
Kaisa issued the most dollar bonds after Evergrande. It has defaulted and is in restructuring talks.
Shenzhen-based Kaisa — the second-largest dollar bond issuer in the property sector after Evergrande — said in a stock exchange filing on December 20 that it has missed payments on several senior notes worth around $400 million and is in talks with bondholders for a debt restructuring.
The missed payment triggered a cross-default provision on its $12 billion offshore bonds.
The developer is known for its urban renewal projects.
The company said that the missed payments may accelerate creditors' repayment demands, though it has not received such notices so far. Fitch has declared Kaisa to be in default.
Shimao was a strong borrower, but it's now under pressure
Shimao, based in Hong Kong, was one of China's top 20 developers last year and was once considered to be one of the sector's strongest borrowers, according to Bloomberg.
But concerns over an asset sale and canceled apartment deals roiled already jittery markets, causing a sudden plunge in its bonds and shares earlier this month, Reuters reported.
Shimao's problems were caused by the sale of a subsidiary property management firm to a sister company, which was questioned by the Shanghai stock exchange, according to Reuters. State television also reported that home buyers who paid for some of the company's apartments were unable to have the ownership transferred to them, as the units had been pledged as collateral to a trust.
The developments caused concerns about the extent of Shimao's cash crunch. It was downgraded in December by Moody's and Fitch — which could, in turn, make it harder for the firm to borrow in the future.
Fortune Land lost contact with a money manager holding onto $313 million
China Fortune Land Development defaulted on a $530 million bond in March, and its troubles are far from over.
On December 16, the industrial park developer said it had not been able to contact a money manager that it entrusted with $313 million for investment, according to a Shanghai Stock Exchange filing. The Beijing-based developer has reported the matter to the police.
The money was given to China Create Capital in 2018 to invest in financial products, Fortune Land said.
The Beijing-based developer pledged to "actively cooperate" with authorities in the investigation and to safeguard the interest of the company and shareholders, it added in the statement.
Smaller players Fantasia, Modern Land, and Sinic Holdings have all defaulted
That's as the cash crunch has spread with spooked banks and financial institutions starting to curb new loans to developers.
At least one has announced a reprieve — Fantasia managed to extend the maturity date of one of its onshore bonds just last week, the company said in a stock exchange filing.
Beijing is trying to ring-fence the fallout
The Chinese government appears to be walking a tightrope — it has signaled there will be no outright bailout for Evergrande but regulatory authorities have sought to reassure investors that the fallout would be contained.
Authorities have asked government-owned firms and state-backed property developers to buy some of Evergrande's assets, Reuters reported in September. Beijing has also asked some banks to issue more loans to real estate companies to mitigate some of the sector's cash crunch, Reuters reported in November.
Some investors see long-term opportunities in the market even amid the uncertainty.
Singapore's GIC, which runs the seventh-largest sovereign wealth fund in the world according to assets under management, told Bloomberg in December it remains confident about the Chinese real estate sector. GIC CEO Lim Chow-Kiat told the media outlet Beijing would not let things "spiral out of control," but investors should be discerning about where to put their money.