rebate of as much as half-a-dollar on each bond failed to enthuse buyers. This compares with an average rebate of around 25 cents issuers used to pay to entice individual investors, in itself an indication of a change in sentiment. Another property firm, Cheung Kong Holdings, got the same private wealth investors to pick up 60 percent of its perpetual bonds.
Plenty of investors have already decided this is an environment in which exposure to equities is possibly the better alternative to putting more money into junk bonds, whose riskiness is comparable to equities.
Data from funds tracker EPFR and other investment banks shows Asia ex-Japan equity funds have been attracting several times the flows going into the region's bond funds since November. In the week ended Jan. 10, emerging market equity funds had record inflows of $7.4 billion, nearly four times that for debt funds.
The MSCI index of Asia ex-Japan stocks has climbed 6 percent since the end of November, compared with the just under a 1 percent rise in the high-yield JP Morgan Asian Credit Index (JACI) composite benchmark.
"Instead of chasing high single-digit yields in Chinese property bonds, one might as well invest in select equities or sell some options if that makes any sense," said Joshua Lee, Associate Director with Magenta Advisors, an investment management firm.
Selling put options, or options to sell stocks, could annually yield as much as 14 percent on blue-chip names, Lee said.