China's Evergrande plunges as much as 14% after $2.6 billion sale falls through, as trading resumes in Hong Kong
Evergrandestock plunged as much as 14% Thursday as trading resumed in Hong Kong, after a two-week suspension.
- The Chinese property giant said a $2.6 billion deal to offload some assets had fallen through and home sales had plunged.
Shares in embattled Chinese property developer Evergrande plunged as much as 14% on the
Investors dumped the stock after a major deal to sell 50.1% of Evergrande's property services arm to rival company Hopson Development fell through. The deal would have been worth $2.6 billion.
Evergrande - one of China's biggest property developers and among the most indebted companies in the world - also said home sales had plunged dramatically in a filing late Wednesday, which further spooked investors.
The company said it's made next to no progress on selling its assets, adding: "In view of the difficulties, challenges and uncertainties in improving its liquidity, there is no guarantee that the Group will be able to meet its financial obligations under the relevant financing documents and other contracts."
Evergrande shares finished 12.54% lower, standing at 2.58 Hong Kong dollars ($0.33) each. The company's stock price has plunged more than 85% over the last year. The broader Hang Seng index fell 0.47%, while China's CSI 300 eked out a 0.36% gain.
Trading in the company had been suspended for a fortnight, as Evergrande and Hopson tried to thrash out a deal.
Evergrande owes more than $300 billion and has missed a number of offshore bond payments. A 30-day grace period for a $83 million interest payment ends on Saturday, after which the company would officially be in default.
It is desperately trying to raise funds. But on Wednesday night, Hopson said the deal to buy Evergrande's property arm had fallen through.
China's property sector has grown rapidly over the last decade by borrowing heavily, raising alarms in Beijing. The government is now cracking down on debt levels, and it's making life very difficult for the big developers.
Evergrande's links throughout China and global financial
"Evergrande is on the brink of defaulting," said analysts at S&P Global Ratings, led by Matthew Chow. "This could have wide-reaching negative ramifications for other developers, suppliers and contractors, and the banks and financial institutions that lend to them."
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