CCB's off-balance-sheet liabilities only 7 pc
Some analysts say that such heavy reliance raises the risk of a liquidity crisis in China' banking system arising from the maturity mismatch between assets and liabilities.
Bank of China chairman Xiao Gang raised eyebrows last month with an opinion article in state-run media in which he compared WMPs to a Ponzi scheme, referring to the temptation for banks to fund payouts of maturing WMPs through new issuance rather than maturing assets.
Under certain conditions, the music may stop when investors lose confidence and reduce their buying or withdraw from WMPs, he wrote.
Market watchers also noted that the lack of official data on these wealth management products forced even the chairman of China's fourth-largest bank to rely on Fitch Ratings, which estimates they account for 16 percent of total bank deposits.
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