Here Is The Biggest, And Most Underreported, Risk Facing China

Tyler Durden's picture


When it comes to the laundry list of China "hard-landing" risk factors, after many years, even the mainstream media has finally gotten it mostly right:

  • a slowing economy crippled by soaring debt, now over 300% of GDP
  • an economy which is overly reliant on fixed investment
  • an artificially high exchange rate which is adversely impacting exports and impairing trade, in a "beggar thy neighbor" world everyone is rapidly devaluing their own currency
  • the feedback loop of plunging commodity prices and highly levered domestic corporation which can not pay their annual interest expense payments at current prices of industrial commodities, leading to surging business failures and defaults
  • a burst housing bubble which recently popped (although slowly growing again)
  • a burst stock market bubble which recently popped (although slowly growing again)
  • Non-performing loans, as high as 20%, and metastssizing across the Chinese banking sector

And much more.

However one risk, perhaps the biggest one, which has so far flown deep under the radar, is also the biggest one - which may explain why so few have noticed it - namely social discontent, resulting from a breakdown in recent "agreeable" labor conditions, wage cuts and rising unemployment, leading to labor strikes and in some cases, violence.

Over the past few months we have chronicled several such incident which suggest that the labor market is rapidly becoming China's biggest risk factor, such as:

But the best confirmation just how serious the employment situation in China is getting comes courtesy of the China Labour Bulletin website, which tracks the number of largely unreported labor protests and strikes across China.

Presenting exhibit A demonstrating how, quietly, deteriorating employment conditions have become a gaping risk for China's politburo: the total number of strikes over the past 5 years:


And for those who prefer a hands on experience, here is an interactive tracker of every single reported strike that has been caught by the website over the past 5 years:

We wonder: just how much "more exponential" will China's "strike chart" have to get before everyone else finally notices?

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Thu, 11/12/2015 - 21:33 | 6784826 Itchy and Scratchy
Itchy and Scratchy's picture

Send 'em all Kenyan cell phones & ebt cards! 

Thu, 11/12/2015 - 22:47 | 6784850 Paveway IV
Paveway IV's picture

The food/labor/housing riots will start in the southeast and the northeast. Chinese soldiers will do their jobs until they stop getting paid or turn on their corrupt masters. After that, all bets are off.

Thu, 11/12/2015 - 21:39 | 6784844 kelley805
Thu, 11/12/2015 - 21:52 | 6784885 besnook
besnook's picture

that means china will have to ramp up the anti usa rhetoric to get the chinese ready to channel that energy into something more productive, like killing imperialists.

Thu, 11/12/2015 - 22:31 | 6784974 Give up. Realit...
Give up. Reality is not scientific nor even mathematical.'s picture

Oh, yes... And perhaps preparing the comfort houses for their traditional Japanese overlords who are just now again looking hungry for larger markets to conquer, but this time with U.S. support.

The butter is only on one side of the bread.

Fri, 11/13/2015 - 08:53 | 6785859 fattail
fattail's picture

Good thing those Japanese comfort houses only need blowup dolls, sex robots, and lap pillows.  All cheap plastic shit made in china, except for the robot whose software had to be pirated from Japan.  Win win.

Thu, 11/12/2015 - 21:52 | 6784886 ptolemy_newit
ptolemy_newit's picture

rant mine older it is, but Boris shed the light more before,



Boris seeing not the picture enough big!

It currency and economic and political and religious war! US foreign policy start fire in countries many these years what for you can ask? Scared little country of other empire to take shape!     Middle East empire could big Islam hate interest on money loan so jrewish would be like crazy against competition for money loaning skimming middlemen.

Euroconflictunity only 12 countries must be and club med no holiday because poor hair north people get the stickler. So ussa need euro at 1.5.

The money new comes from the coldest places before and after the tropic lines.  We think like Siberian Aduu to mate with slimmer women of east.  New word for this empire growing is CRAMSTAN – China, Russia and Mongolia with many stans.

So pump and dump of commodities necessary would be by last stand of culling the peak problem of people.  USSA feral bank has new orders to crash system after C of CRAMSTAN get big full of spending money on things that are raw.

Sure time they take to arrange tracer currency new that has no paper needed.

Thu, 11/12/2015 - 21:55 | 6784897 Dr. Engali
Dr. Engali's picture

Time to start outsourcing jobs to..., to..., fuck, we're running out of places to exploit.

Thu, 11/12/2015 - 22:52 | 6785032 Demdere
Demdere's picture

They're called immigrants.  The exist because of minimum wage law and other restrictions on honest and ethical commercial exchanges.

Every one of our big problems in the modern world are due to our government's, their form, function and policies. It is all self-inflicted. So fo course we blame minorities and immigrants.

Fri, 11/13/2015 - 03:21 | 6785542 Iam_Silverman
Iam_Silverman's picture

Whiskey Tango Foxtrot, dude?

What does your dissertation have to do with the topic of outsourcing jobs?  Try to stay focused here man - this financial blog stuff is important!

Thu, 11/12/2015 - 22:01 | 6784912 pocomotion
pocomotion's picture

Reverse Osmosis? - think false flag affecting Chinese that get's their Patriotic winds a-blowing...  Just a sic thought I had.  I need to take a breather from ZH to get myself together...

Thu, 11/12/2015 - 22:07 | 6784923 FreeNewEnergy
FreeNewEnergy's picture

Just thinking out loud...

If the NWO really wants a one-world government and/or currency, why not let them have it? Why bother fighting them? From the looks of things, they'll so royally fuck it up that the end result would probably end up being better than what we have now.

I mean, like when Obama got into office, people said (self included), "well, he can't be any worse than Geroge W."

Famous last words.

I like the one-world crap-shoot. Why the fuck not. It would last maybe three years. In the meantime, think of the carnage, fun and ridiicule of "masters of the universe" (and probably their brutal demise) that would ensue.

Why not?

Thu, 11/12/2015 - 22:47 | 6785022 bid the soldier...
bid the soldiers shoot's picture

Why not?

Room 101, that's why not.

What size rat cage do you wear, FNE?

Thu, 11/12/2015 - 22:38 | 6784995 Cindy6
Cindy6's picture

Source: China Labor Bulletin and zero hedge


So,  does that mean ZH get funding from the NED as well? 

just like the CLB...

Thu, 11/12/2015 - 22:53 | 6785033 Paveway IV
Paveway IV's picture

Yeah, because Tyler should have used an official Chinese government source for the number of labor strikes. Oh, wait... China has never admitted to ANY labor stikes and the press is prohibited from reporting them. So is CLB just fabricating all of them for their own evil NED agenda?

Honestly, Cindy6... it's like asking the U.S. Department of Labor for an accurate unemployment number. CLB is just LESS inaccurate than the outright lies spewed by the CCP.

Fri, 11/13/2015 - 07:54 | 6785746 Cindy6
Cindy6's picture

US State Dept. is a trusted source for Chinese labor stats? You need to get out more...  

The NED's specialty is in color revolution in non-US-vassal govt. Just 'cause Chinese govt stat is not trust worthy, doesn't mean US govt would be better. In fact, it's far worse in this case since there's an agenda. 

Thu, 11/12/2015 - 22:39 | 6785001 I AM SULLY
I AM SULLY's picture

Oh ... yeah ... but China is "stable".

(Jesus - when will people realize ... THERE IS NO SAFE HAVEN)

(this shit storm hits EVERYWHERE)

Fri, 11/13/2015 - 00:18 | 6785270 antonina2
antonina2's picture

Wow, I didn't realize, all I have been reading is that the economy is improving.....huh!  That will be something to think about as I form my game plan for Dec

Fri, 11/13/2015 - 00:36 | 6785301 SamEyeAm
SamEyeAm's picture

Why the hell would anyone click on a interactive tracker based in Hong Kong, China?

You're just asking to get hacked and have whatever on your computer stolen.

Fri, 11/13/2015 - 03:22 | 6785531 Iam_Silverman
Iam_Silverman's picture

"However one risk, perhaps the biggest one, which has so far flown deep under the radar, is also the biggest one - which may explain why so few have noticed it - namely social discontent"


Wrong.  I think that the biggest impact to the Chinese economy is the fact that the Silbermann family won't be spending jack shit this year on junk.  Our son will get household items and a portion of the steer we put in the freezer recently.  My wife may even give him a pint or two of her peach preserves she canned this spring.

Fri, 11/13/2015 - 03:54 | 6785566 wildbad
wildbad's picture

..did you know that Jeb Bush made lots of money on obama phne in conjunction with thes "Slim" Carlos billionaire from mexico?  well he did

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