ADB: Emerging East Asia Bond Market Growth Steady amid Global Slowdown

Diep Nguyen

10:40 20/11/2019

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Viet Nam’s local currency bond market expanded during the third quarter of 2019. At the end of September, Viet Nam had $55.1 billion in paper outstanding, 3.4% higher on-quarter and 1.9% bigger on-year in local currency terms.

ADB: Emerging East Asia Bond Market Growth Steady amid Global Slowdown
Emerging East Asia’s local currency bond market posted steady growth during the third quarter of 2019 despite persistent trade uncertainties and a global economic downturn, according to the latest issue of the Asian Development Bank’s (ADB) Asia Bond Monitor. 
“The ongoing trade dispute between the People’s Republic of China(PRC) and the United States anda sharper-than-expected economic slowdown in advanced economies and the PRC continue to pose the biggest downside risks to the region’s financial stability,”said ADB Chief Economist Mr. Yasuyuki Sawada. “However, monetary policy easing in several advanced economies is helping to keep financial conditions stable.” 
Emerging East Asia comprises the PRC; Hong Kong, China; Indonesia; the Republic of Korea; Malaysia; the Philippines; Singapore; Thailand; and Viet Nam.
Local currency bonds outstanding in emerging East Asia reached $15.2 trillion at the end of September. This was 3.1% higher than at the end of June. Local currency government bonds outstanding totaled $9.4 trillion, accountingfor 61.8% of the total, while the stock of corporate bonds was $5.8 trillion. A total of $1.5 trillion in local currency bonds were issued in the third quarter, up 0.9% versus the previous three months. 
Viet Nam’s local currency bond market expanded during the third quarter of 2019. At the end of September, Viet Nam had $55.1 billion in paper outstanding, 3.4% higher on-quarter and 1.9% bigger on-year in local currency terms. 
This expansion was due mainly to a 4.0% on-quarter growth in government bonds to $51.0 billion as the State Bank of Viet Nam increased issuance of central bank bills. The overall expansion of the country’s local currency bond market was slightly tempered by a 2.8% contraction on-quarter in the corporate bond market to $5.0 billion. The corporate bond market still posted growth of 4.2% year-on-year.    
The PRC remained emerging East Asia’s largest bond marketat $11.5 trillion, accounting for 75.4% of emerging East Asia’s outstanding bonds.Indonesia had the fastest-growing local currency bond market in the region during the third quarter,boostedby large issuance of treasury bills and bonds.
A special theme chapter examines the relationship between bond market development and the risk-taking behavior of banks. The analysis finds that well-developed bond markets reduce the overall risk of banks and improve their liquidity positions. This suggests bond market development can contribute to the soundness of the banking system.
An annual liquidity surveyin the report shows increased liquidity and trading volumes in most regional local currency bond markets in 2019 versus 2018. It also highlightsthe need for a well-functioning hedging mechanism and diversified investor base for both government and corporate bonds.

DIEP NGUYEN

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