October 26, 2021
By Donny Kwok and Andrew Galbraith
HONG KONG/SHANGHAI (Reuters) – Modern Land reported a missed payment on Tuesday, the latest Chinese property developer to do so, adding to worries about spiralling effects of the debt crisis at behemoth China Evergrande Group and dragging on shares in the sector.
China’s state planner is set to meet with property firms carrying large dollar-denominated debts later in the day to take stock of their total issuance volume and repayment capability, amid the mounting concerns about liquidity.
Evergrande, which narrowly averted a costly default last week, is reeling under more than $300 million in liabilities and has a major payment deadline on Friday.
Modern Land (China) Co Ltd said in a filing that it had not repaid principal and interest on its 12.85% senior notes that matured on Monday due to “unexpected liquidity issues”.
This follows a default by Fantasia Holdings Group on a maturing dollar bond in early October that heightened concerns in international debt markets, already roiled by worries over whether Evergrande would meet its obligations.
Developers are defaulting “one by one”, said an investor with exposure to Chinese high-yield debt, who asked not to be named as he was not authorised to speak with media.
“The question is always, who’s next?”
Shares of Chinese property shares extended losses, hurt also by concerns over plans to introduce a real estate tax. China’s CSI 300 Real Estate Index fell 2.6%, and the Hang Seng Mainland Properties Index slumped nearly 5%.
The prospect of contagion and more defaults have weighed on the sector in a major setback for investors.
Chinese Estates Holdings Ltd said it would book a loss of HK$288.37 million in the current financial year from its latest sale of bonds issued by Chinese property developer Kaisa Group Holdings Ltd.
Shares in China Evergrande Group’s electric vehicle (EV) unit rose as much as 5.8% early on Tuesday, as the cash-strapped developer said it would prioritise the growth of its EV business, before reversing course to slump 3%.
China Evergrande gave up early gains to fall 6%.
(Reporting By Donny Kwok in Hong Kong and Andrew Galbraith in Shanghai; Writing by Anne Marie Roantree; Editing by Himani Sarkar)