One hundred RMB notes are displayed in Beijing, China. (Photographer: Natalie Behring/Bloomberg)

Dimon Says China's Yuan May Rival Dollar's Role in 20 Years

(Bloomberg) -- China has a long list of financial reforms to tackle before the yuan can rival the global role of the dollar, according to JPMorgan Chase & Co. Chief Executive Officer Jamie Dimon.

“Eventually, it will be comparable -- eventually is 20 or 30 years,” Dimon said when asked in an interview with Bloomberg Television’s Stephen Engle whether China’s yuan would rise to have a role akin to the dollar in the global financial system. “It’s not comparable if it’s not convertible.”

China’s moves up to now, such as winning official reserve-currency status for the yuan at the International Monetary Fund, amount to “small” changes, according to Dimon. He regarded this year’s inclusion of some domestic Chinese equities into MSCI Inc. international stock indexes as a “nice thing -- it gets the world more educated about China -- but in terms of actual dollar amount” of inflows it’s “not going to be Earth-shattering to China or to anybody else.”

“They’re going to have to have a convertible currency” for overseas investors to participate fully in China’s domestic stock market, Dimon said. “That’s quite a ways away.”

When it comes to China’s bond market, now about $10 trillion, Dimon listed a number of needed reforms, especially for corporate securities:

  • Transparency
  • Governance
  • Collateral rules
  • Rule of law
  • Open trading
  • “Proper” research
  • “Proper” credit agencies

“They’re on the way but they still have quite a way to go” to create a “really healthy bond market,” he said. “Until you can buy and sell securities freely -- if you have the U.S. dollar you can buy and sell securities freely -- then that’s a big thing.”

©2018 Bloomberg L.P.

With assistance from Christopher Anstey, Stephen Engle

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