Research / BFI Working PaperJan 27, 2023

Homemade Foreign Trading

Zhiguo He, Yuehan Wang, Xiaoquan Zhu

Using cross-border holding data from all custodians in China’s Stock Connect, we provide evidence that Chinese mainland insiders tend to evade the see-through surveillance by round-tripping via the Stock Connect program. After the regulatory reform of Northbound Investor Identification in 2018, the correlation between insider trading and northbound flows decays, and so does the return predictability of northbound flows. The reduction of return predictability is especially pronounced among less prestigious foreign custodians and cross-operating mainland custodians, behind which mainland insiders are more likely to hide. Our analysis sheds light on the role of regulatory cooperation over capital market integration.

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