China to tighten regulations for booming internet finance to curb fraud

Chinese authorities are planning to tighten regulation of its fast-growing internet finance industry and crack down on illicit transactions, state media reported on Saturday, as the country works to rein in fraud on its online lending platforms.

China’s unregulated online peer-to-peer (P2P) industry has been dogged by reports of fraud in recent years, underscoring growing financial risks and increasing the potential for social unrest.

More than 1,200 P2P firms operating in the sector are in trouble, either running away with investors’ money or closed down, according to industry data provider Wangdaizhijia. The country has almost 3,800 such firms, who do 133.1 billion yuan ($21 billion) worth of business.

Chinese police have detained suspects at Ezubao, the country’s largest P2P platform by lending figures, law enforcement authorities said in December. Ezubao could not be reached by telephone for comment.

Authorities will work with bank regulators to set up a warning system for financial risks and facilitate sharing of information between regions and departments, the official news agency Xinhua reported, citing a statement from a government conference on political and legal work that ended Saturday.

Loans, investments and other financial services done online qualify as internet finance, Xinhua said. Authorities will crack down on law-breakers and work to better educate the public of risks, the newswire said.

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Reuters

Singapore Reporter/s

In Singapore, we are looking to double our reporting team by this year-end to comprehensively cover the fast-moving world of funded startups and VC, PE & M&A deals. We want reporters who can tell our readers what is really happening in these sectors and why it matters to markets, companies and consumers. The ability to write precisely and urgently is crucial for these roles. Ideal candidates must have to ability to work in a collaborative, dynamic, and fast-changing environment. We want our new hires to be digitally savvy and ready to experiment with new forms of storytelling. Most importantly, we are looking for hard-hitting reporters who work well in a team. Collaboration and collegiality are a must.

Following vacancies can be applied for (only in Singapore).

Following vacancies can be applied for (only in Singapore).   

  • A reporter to track companies/startups that have raised private capital, and have the potential to become unicorns. SEA currently has over 40 companies with a valuation of over $100 million and under $1 billion.
  • A reporter who can get behind the scenes and reveal how funding rounds are put together, or why they’ve failed to materialise. She/he in this role will largely focus on long-format stories. 
  • A journalist to track special situations funds, distressed debt and private credit (from the PE angle) across Asia.

Singapore Reporter/s

In Singapore, we are looking to double our reporting team by this year-end to comprehensively cover the fast-moving world of funded startups and VC, PE & M&A deals. We want reporters who can tell our readers what is really happening in these sectors and why it matters to markets, companies and consumers. The ability to write precisely and urgently is crucial for these roles. Ideal candidates must have to ability to work in a collaborative, dynamic, and fast-changing environment. We want our new hires to be digitally savvy and ready to experiment with new forms of storytelling. Most importantly, we are looking for hard-hitting reporters who work well in a team. Collaboration and collegiality are a must.

Following vacancies can be applied for (only in Singapore).

Following vacancies can be applied for (only in Singapore).   

  • A reporter to track companies/startups that have raised private capital, and have the potential to become unicorns. SEA currently has over 40 companies with a valuation of over $100 million and under $1 billion.
  • A reporter who can get behind the scenes and reveal how funding rounds are put together, or why they’ve failed to materialise. She/he in this role will largely focus on long-format stories. 
  • A journalist to track special situations funds, distressed debt and private credit (from the PE angle) across Asia.