Oct. 3 (Bloomberg) -- CSR Corp., China’s biggest trainmaker, plunged the most in two months after 21st Century Business Herald said that 80 percent of the nation’s rail projects have been put on hold.
The stock fell 13 percent to close at HK$2.45, the biggest drop since July 25. China Railway Group Ltd., builder of two- thirds of the nation’s tracks, fell 1.9 percent to a record low of HK$1.55. China Communications Construction Co. fell 8.6 percent, the most in almost three years, to HK$4.69.
The rail projects have been suspended pending clarification of government policies and because banks have stopped issuing loans on concerns about repayments, 21st Century Business said on Oct. 1, citing an unidentified person close to the railway ministry. The government has already slashed spending on railway construction following a fatal high-speed train crash in July, causing China rail stocks to tumble.
“Obviously, the news highlighted by 21st Century is not good,” said Karen Li, a Hong Kong-based analyst at JPMorgan Chase & Co. The slump also reflects “negative sentiment toward the entire fixed-asset investment segment.”
The report didn’t elaborate on which policies were in need of clarification. The railway ministry, which had 2.09 trillion yuan ($328 billion) of liabilities as of the end of June, last week delayed a 20-billion yuan bond until the middle of October. It last sold bonds on Sept. 7, when it issued 5 billion yuan of five-year notes priced to yield 5.93 percent, according to data compiled by Bloomberg.
The yield gap between the ministry’s one-year notes and government debt has risen almost fourfold this year to 219.42 basis points, according to Chinabond data.
Calls to the ministry, CSR Corp., trainmaker China CNR Corp., China Rail Group and China Railway Construction Corp. and trainmaker China CNR Corp. were all unanswered. China began a weeklong national holiday today. The four companies are all based in Beijing.
Construction-equipment maker Lonking Holdings Ltd. plunged 13 percent, the most in more than two years, to HK$2.25. Rival Changsha Zoomlion Heavy Industry Science & Technology Development Co. declined 7.2 percent to HK$8.24.
China Rail Construction closed little changed at HK$3.33 after earlier falling as much as 5.4 percent.
China Rail Group, China Rail Construction and CSR Corp. have all fallen more than 40 percent since the July 23 bullet- train crash near Wenzhou that killed 40 people. China slashed spending on railway construction 50 percent in August as it investigated the crash.
--Billy Chan and Feiwen Rong with assistance from Marco Lui in Hong Kong. Editors: Neil Denslow, Garry Smith
To contact the reporters on this story: Billy Chan in Hong Kong at firstname.lastname@example.org; Feiwen Rong in Beijing at email@example.com
To contact the editor responsible for this story: Neil Denslow at firstname.lastname@example.org.