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 A Top Manager Resigns From China’s Foreign Exchange Agency

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PostSubject: A Top Manager Resigns From China’s Foreign Exchange Agency   Tue Jan 28, 2014 9:32 am

A Top Manager Resigns From China’s Foreign Exchange Agency
By DAVID BARBOZA

SHANGHAI – An American-trained fund manager who returned to China to help invest the world’s largest foreign exchange reserves has left his government position, the Chinese state-run news media reported on Tuesday.

The government did not explain why Zhu Changhong, a highly respected fund manager, was no longer the chief investment officer at the State Administration of Foreign Exchange in Beijing, the agency in charge of investing the nation’s $3.8 trillion in foreign exchange reserves.
A spokesman at the agency, known as SAFE, could not be reached on Tuesday afternoon for comment.
Analysts said the departure was surprising because Mr. Zhu, who is in his early 40s, had been recruited to help the Chinese government improve the management of its foreign exchange reserves, much of which are invested in United States Treasury bonds.

In 2009, Mr. Zhu left his job as hedge fund manager at the Pacific Investment Management Company, the huge asset management company known as Pimco, and began work at SAFE in 2010.
A Chinese native, Mr. Zhu studied physics at the University of Chicago and then worked in the United States as a bond trader and hedge fund manager under Pimco’s founder and co-chief investment officer, William H. Gross. Mr. Zhu joined Pimco in 1999.

China has been trying to strengthen the management of its government assets at a time of rapid economic growth that has led to a vast accumulation of financial assets. The government now has much of that money managed by investment teams at SAFE, the China Investment Corporation and the National Social Security Fund.

Last July, Mr. Zhu was the subject of a flattering profile in The Wall Street Journal, which described him as a low-key but highly respected fund manager who was helping SAFE diversify its holdings away from being overly reliant on United States government bonds and bills, which offer safe but low returns.
In recent years, some analysts have said that SAFE has moved to invest more aggressively. Using the SAFE Investment Company, which is registered in Hong Kong, the agency has set up a fund worth hundreds of billions of dollars to invest in stocks and to take direct stakes in foreign companies. The agency, analysts say, has channeled money toward international private equity funds and American corporate pension funds.

http://dealbook.nytimes.com/2014/01/28/a-top-manager-resigns-from-chinas-foreign-exchange-agency/?_php=true&_type=blogs&_r=0

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