Sometimes people go missing and show up again a few hours or days later without any problem.
When the CEO of the Hong Kong branch of one of China’s biggest brokerages goes missing, it raises some serious questions. Especially after China’s clamp down on financial market participants in the wake of the stock market crash.
Guotai Junan International Holdings Ltd. has been looking for its Hong Kong branch chief executive Yim Fung since Nov. 18. Bloomberg tried to reach Yim, but the calls went straight to voicemail.
BREAKING: Chairman of Guotai Junan Int’l, 1 of China’ largest brokerages, is “missing”; company said can’t find him pic.twitter.com/wDD7VEM447
— George Chen (@george_chen) November 23, 2015
Yim is “missing” and “currently cannot discharge his duties,” the company stated on Nov. 23 to Hong Kong’s stock exchange. The company named Director Qi Haiying as the temporary CEO.
Under normal circumstances, one would assume Yim is ill, lost his phone, or just had enough of his stressful job and wanted to take a few days off.
Not so after China’s stock market burst in July. The regime has been harassing, arresting, and intimidating everyone from journalists to financial market participants in order to prevent the stock market from crashing further.
At least 16 people have been arrested, are being investigated, or have been taken away from their job duties to assist mainland authorities, according to statements and announcements compiled by Bloomberg.
Reuters quoted one of the fund managers taken away for questioning saying: “If I don’t come back, look after my wife.”
Caijing reporter Wang Xiaolu made the following public confession after he broke the news that the regime would not support the stock market any longer:
“I shouldn’t have released a report with a major negative impact on the market at such a sensitive time. I shouldn’t do that just to catch attention, which has caused the country and its investors such a big loss. I regret [it and am] willing to confess my crime.”
“After the stock market bubble burst [the Chinese regime] just continues to clamp down on markets, pull away rights to trade, create an environment where people are afraid to trade even though they have done nothing wrong,” said Fraser Howie, China expert and author of “Red Capitalism.”
So what might Yim have done wrong? According to sohu.com, it may be related to the investigation of Yao Gang, a vice chairman of the China Securities Regulatory Commission, who was arrested Nov. 13 on corruption charges.