Bottom fishing in the Chinese market has started.
The country’s new restrictions on its education and technology companies should be “normal” for emerging market investors, Astoria Portfolio Advisors founder and chief investment officer John Davi told CNBC’s “ETF Edge” this week.
“There are always regulatory risks in China,” he said in an interview on Monday. “In the past 10 years, there has been a number of regulatory tightenings in China in a number of different sectors. Every time that sector is affected by 20-50%.”
“There’s a value in there right now,” he said. “I think there are more downsides, but I think there is a long-term way to monetize these billions of people in broad emerging markets, and China is a good way to go.”
Last month, the KraneShares CSI China Internet ETF (KWEB) raked in around $ 2 billion in inflows, a sign that some investors value the downtrodden group, Davi said. The ETF is down around 23% in the last month.
“I still think it’s right to have a globally diversified portfolio and some exposure to emerging markets as well as China and other developed markets,” he said. “I know it’s tough, but you really want to have a long-term horizon.”
Not all US investors will agree, Perth Tolle, founder of Life + Liberty Indexes, said in the same interview.
“It is precisely for these reasons that people do not invest in emerging markets at all: a lack of transparency and the political risk,” said Tolle.
“At a time when US valuations are so high, you don’t want to stop people from investing overseas,” she said. “Unfortunately, I think that’s going to happen here, especially since China makes up 40% of most emerging market indices.”
Great solution is to invest in countries outside of China with freer people and markets. Your company leads the index behind the Alpha Architect Freedom 100 Emerging Markets ETF (FRDM), a fund that weights its holdings based on civil, political and economic freedoms.
The largest holdings are Taiwan Semiconductor, Samsung Electronics, Bank of Central Asia, and Bank Pekao, and their largest country weights are Taiwan, Chile, and South Korea.
“We believe that growth in the next decade will be found in countries that are freer in emerging markets. Yes, there will be trade with China, and we are not penalizing free trade. Trade is good and that includes your economic freedom. But these are not companies that are subject to the Chinese state, “said Tolle.
“These are not companies that the state can step in overnight and destroy all of your value because now you have to be a nonprofit like we saw with the edu-tech companies,” she said. “You will still have some indirect exposure to China from trading, and you will even have it in the S&P 500, but you don’t have to double that.”
For the founder and chief investor of the EMQQ-ETF, Kevin Carter, the panic over China’s raids is an “unbelievable opportunity,” he said in the same interview.
“This set of regulatory issues is just the normal administration of the country. It’s the financial system. They are monopoly rules. And these are not only found in China, “said Carter, referring to the goal of US officials at Big Tech and the Google investigations of the European Union.
“This is about the government taking hold of the power that many of these tech companies have and making sure they have rules and regulations for the good of society,” Carter said.