A small-time speculator in front of his computer in Shanghai, on march 25, 2018 (Photo Johannes EISELE. AFP)
A beach umbrella and a few retirees sitting on stools and plastic like you see on every street corner in China. But the time is not at breakfast or in part of cards: the small-time speculators in Shanghai to discuss as each week of the course development.
For a quarter of a century, the corner of the streets of Guangdong, and to Beihai is the appointment of the small savers who have made the stock markets chinese a kind of grand casino prey to the rumours, the speculation and the roller coaster.
The participants did perhaps not have the class nor the expertise of the investor and american billionaire Warren Buffett, but they are certainly not lacking in passion or insurance.
“The chinese stock market follows a trajectory in W”, explains learnedly Chai Yongping, aged 58, in order to explain the price volatility. “But after October, the market recovers, and it will be the best time to get rich,” predicts the man in his fifties, the head covered with a bonnet in red wool.
The assembly meets every Saturday and Sunday in the heart of the financial district of the economic capital of china, no offense to the proponents of the orthodoxy of marxist still officially in the middle kingdom. If the communists have banned gambling, these have been replaced by stock markets are known for their erratic fluctuations.
As in any discussion of investors, the conversations revolve around the political and economic environment and its potential impact on the course, such as threats of trade war, the sino-american.
“The trade war is only a pretext that Trump uses to show his displeasure with regard to the launch by China of a futures market of oil contracts,” says Mr. Chai.
The current Shanghai stock Exchange was launched in 1990, at a time when the financial information was not like today available a click away on a mobile phone. Hence the appearance of such meetings of investors exchanging their hoses on the direction of indices.
“At the time, it was the place where the investors were getting first-hand information before taking a decision,” recalls Mr. Chai.
– ‘Buffett Analysis System’ –
Each weekend, there are now dozens of small-time speculators who end up on the same street corner, overflowing in an alley adjacent to it.
As it has done for the past ten years, Shen Yuxi, 61 years of age, attempts to pass a “analysis software stock market” that it offers to the demo on an old computer screen placed on a kind of cart as in the use of the street vendors.
Mr. Shen has been called the software “Buffett Analysis System”. It is expected to identify actions that have the most dropped and therefore are good to pick up. A photo of the american billionaire, known for the subtlety of its investments, is taped on the screen.
A few curious look at the past charts, but none seem sufficiently convinced to take out the 5.800 yuan (760€) is the cost of software to Mr. Shen.
“It’s true, business do not work well at this time but I come anyway because the information is crucial when one wants to invest,” said the sexagenarian, who manages his own portfolio of securities.
If the financial information in real time is nowadays ubiquitous in China, the small shareholders of the streets of Shanghai remain attached to their old eating habits.
“When the market goes well, there is more of the world,” says Mr. Chai. But the stock market crisis of the summer of 2015 has left traces.
“We no longer see the crowds of yesteryear”, he points out.