News You Can Use
This week a major signal of the opening of China to the U.S. was announced in the form of a major government investment in the private equity firm, Blackstone Group. This is the first time China has invested in a U.S. private equity fund with any portion of its mammoth $1 trillion in foreign exchange reserves. There are several terms in the agreement which will be sure to keep the investment steady for the next four years with minimal disturbance, so one can expect this to be a good forerunner to other Chinese diversification. That's the big picture.
For the smaller numismatic picture we have noticed a significant surge in new issue sales originating from China and Hong Kong on the eBay auction site over the past few months. Seems there are several distributors trying to tap into the broader U.S. market for all world new issue coins. Some of these sellers are offering small sets at substantially lower prices than can be had from U.S. based dealers, but with the shipping costs added on, the total price is often higher. Even so, it is worth taking a look, as sometimes you can find issues, which are not yet being offered for sale in the U.S.