Chalk one up for Beijing in its long battle with Washington: the US now has fewer listed public companies than China.
A spate of shelved and fizzling initial public offerings has recently cast a pall over the US equity market, with WeWork scrapping plans to sell shares after investors balked at its valuation and corporate governance structures.
Yet the number of listed US companies has been shrinking for more than two decades, as private equity firms and acquisitive companies have gobbled up many public groups. At the same time, ample venture capital and buoyant debt markets have allowed other fast-growing groups to stay private for much longer than in the past.
That has crimped the number of public American companies from a peak of more than 8,000 in 1996 to about 4,400 currently, according to data compiled by JPMorgan Asset Management.
Ultralow interest rates, abundant liquidity and increasingly onerous reporting requirements mean it is much less attractive to be a public company today in the USA than it used to be. For China it is more a story of trying to create additional funding avenues for companies beyond the government and state-owned banks.Click HERE to subscribe to Fuller Treacy Money Back to top