Earn $10 when you view your rate on a personal loan *
Bonus deposited into a SoFi Money® account. See terms.

Investing in Chinese Stocks

By Brian Nibley · April 21, 2021 · 4 minute read

We’re here to help! First and foremost, SoFi Learn strives to be a beneficial resource to you as you navigate your financial journey. Read more We develop content that covers a variety of financial topics. Sometimes, that content may include information about products, features, or services that SoFi does not provide. We aim to break down complicated concepts, loop you in on the latest trends, and keep you up-to-date on the stuff you can use to help get your money right. Read less

Investing in Chinese Stocks

China represents a part of the global investor marketplace known as the “emerging markets,” or countries that are headed toward first-world status and undergoing a period of rapid growth. China has the second largest economy in the world and is rapidly growing. Economists estimate that the country will overtake the USA to become the largest economy in the years to come.

Some prominent macro investors have expressed positive sentiments about emerging market opportunities. In spite of the potential opportunities, investing in foreign stocks can be confusing, scary, and in some cases impossible. Here are some facts about investing in Chinese stocks.

Can You Invest in Chinese Stocks?

The short answer is yes, investors located in the US and elsewhere do generally have the capability of trading international stocks, including investing in Chinese stocks. The details aren’t always so simple, though.

The majority of Chinese stocks can only be traded on Chinese exchanges, including the Hong Kong Stock Exchange, the Shanghai Stock Exchange, and the Shenzhen Stock Exchange.

There are ways for foreigners to participate in these markets, either directly or through various types of investment vehicles or intermediaries. For the most part, buying Chinese stocks is not unlike buying US stocks. Investors may only need to search for specific securities or utilize a special intermediary firm in addition to their standard brokerage.

What are the Best Chinese Stocks to Buy?

For US investors, choices may be limited. If there are a limited number of Chinese stocks that can be purchased directly on a stock exchange, then it’s just a matter of evaluating stocks on the list choosing whichever ones seem most attractive.

How Can Foreigners Invest in the Chinese Stock Market?

To buy and sell stocks on foreign exchanges, investors often have to contact their brokerage firms and ask if they allow participation in foreign markets. If the answer is yes, the firm could then consult with a market maker, known as an affiliate firm. Affiliate firms, which are located in the country where foreign investors want to buy stocks, help facilitate these types of transactions.

The easiest way for many investors to gain exposure to the Chinese stock market might be to purchase shares in an emerging markets mutual fund or exchange-traded funds (ETFs) that includes some stocks from publicly-traded companies based in China.

To do this, investors can look for funds that track a Chinese index. Some examples include:

•   Shenzhen Composite Index, which tracks the Shenzhen Stock Exchange
•   Shanghai Shenzen CSI 300 Index, which tracks parts of the Shanghai and Shenzhen exchanges
•   Shanghai Stock Exchange Composite Index, which tracks the Shanghai Stock Exchange

As far as the actual process of buying Chinese stocks is concerned, doing so will look like buying any other stock. This holds especially true for those buying an ETF or mutual fund. Buying individual Chinese securities may involve an extra step with an affiliate firm, as mentioned earlier.

In either case, investors have to first open a brokerage account, decide which securities they would like to own, then create appropriate buy orders.

Pros & Cons of Buying Chinese Stocks

While the decision ultimately lies with an individual investor, there are both pros and cons of global investments, including Chinese stocks. Here, we will explore both perspectives.

Pros of Buying Chinese Stocks

Factors like a long-term outlook, China’s response to the recent health crisis, and international diversification can make Chinese stocks appealing to some investors.

Long-term Time Horizon

Some investors believe that Chinese investments have a positive long-term outlook— regardless of any short-term political concerns (more on that in Cons of Buying Chinese Stocks, below). China has been growing fast and could continue to do so, making the country an ideal place to invest for the long haul.

China’s Response to the COVID-19 Pandemic

After the COVID-19 pandemic shut down most major economies in the world for an extended period of time, many areas saw contracting economic growth and continued to struggle. China, on the other hand, responded quickly and was able to reopen its economy sooner than many others, marking the country as a champion of growth throughout the pandemic and beyond.

International Diversification

Some investors choose to invest in the stocks of different countries as a way to further diversify their portfolios. The rationale: An investor could be diversified within and across different industries, but if something were to negatively affect the economy of the country those industries are in, it might not matter.

Cons of Buying Chinese Stocks

There are a few reasons why some investors might choose to avoid Chinese stocks.

Delisting of Some Chinese Companies

In recent times, executive orders have removed some Chinese stocks from American stock exchanges, including a Chinese oil firm named Cnooc (CEO) and China Mobile (CHL).

Growth Limits

Even though China has been growing rapidly, some believe the nature of the Chinese government could stifle innovation going forward. Which industries survive and which ones don’t can sometimes be determined by a simple forced government decision. One perspective is that China’s best growth days are behind it.

Are Chinese Stocks Undervalued?

It is impossible to say for certain. From a long-term perspective, if someone assumes that China will keep growing at a similar pace as it has in the past, then Chinese stocks in general could be undervalued. But there could also be some sectors that are currently overvalued, some stocks more undervalued than others, and so on.

The Takeaway

China is considered to be one of the strongest emerging market economies, leading some investors to see potential for great returns there. Foreign investors have several options if they want to invest in Chinese stocks. Doing so may not be any different than buying stocks in one’s home country. And because of its large economy, there may be other stocks affected by China as well, even if they aren’t Chinese stocks.

For investors looking to open or add to their portfolio, SoFi Invest® offers both active and automated investing, with the potential to buy IPOs at IPO prices, trade stocks, ETFs, and crypto, and manage their accounts from a convenient mobile app.

Find out how to get started with SoFi Invest.



SoFi Invest®
The information provided is not meant to provide investment or financial advice. Investment decisions should be based on an individual’s specific financial needs, goals and risk profile. SoFi can’t guarantee future financial performance. Advisory services offered through SoFi Wealth, LLC. SoFi Securities, LLC, member FINRA / SIPC . SoFi Invest refers to the three investment and trading platforms operated by Social Finance, Inc. and its affiliates (described below). Individual customer accounts may be subject to the terms applicable to one or more of the platforms below.
1) Automated Investing—The Automated Investing platform is owned by SoFi Wealth LLC, an SEC Registered Investment Advisor (“Sofi Wealth“). Brokerage services are provided to SoFi Wealth LLC by SoFi Securities LLC, an affiliated SEC registered broker dealer and member FINRA/SIPC, (“Sofi Securities).
2) Active Investing—The Active Investing platform is owned by SoFi Securities LLC. Clearing and custody of all securities are provided by APEX Clearing Corporation.
3) Cryptocurrency is offered by SoFi Digital Assets, LLC, a FinCEN registered Money Service Business.
For additional disclosures related to the SoFi Invest platforms described above, including state licensure of Sofi Digital Assets, LLC, please visit www.sofi.com/legal. Neither the Investment Advisor Representatives of SoFi Wealth, nor the Registered Representatives of SoFi Securities are compensated for the sale of any product or service sold through any SoFi Invest platform. Information related to lending products contained herein should not be construed as an offer or pre-qualification for any loan product offered by SoFi Lending Corp and/or its affiliates.
IPOs: Investing early in IPO stock involves substantial risk of loss. The decision to invest should always be made as part of a comprehensive financial plan taking individual circumstances and risk appetites into account.
Crypto: Bitcoin and other cryptocurrencies aren’t endorsed or guaranteed by any government, are volatile, and involve a high degree of risk. Consumer protection and securities laws don’t regulate cryptocurrencies to the same degree as traditional brokerage and investment products. Research and knowledge are essential prerequisites before engaging with any cryptocurrency. US regulators, including FINRA , the SEC , and the CFPB , have issued public advisories concerning digital asset risk. Cryptocurrency purchases should not be made with funds drawn from financial products including student loans, personal loans, mortgage refinancing, savings, retirement funds or traditional investments. Limitations apply to trading certain crypto assets and may not be available to residents of all states.
Exchange Traded Funds (ETFs): Investors should carefully consider the information contained in the prospectus, which contains the Fund’s investment objectives, risks, charges, expenses, and other relevant information. You may obtain a prospectus from the Fund company’s website or by email customer service at [email protected] Please read the prospectus carefully prior to investing. Shares of ETFs must be bought and sold at market price, which can vary significantly from the Fund’s net asset value (NAV). Investment returns are subject to market volatility and shares may be worth more or less their original value when redeemed. The diversification of an ETF will not protect against loss. An ETF may not achieve its stated investment objective. Rebalancing and other activities within the fund may be subject to tax consequences.
Financial Tips & Strategies: The tips provided on this website are of a general nature and do not take into account your specific objectives, financial situation, and needs. You should always consider their appropriateness given your own circumstances.
Third Party Brand Mentions: No brands or products mentioned are affiliated with SoFi, nor do they endorse or sponsor this article. Third party trademarks referenced herein are property of their respective owners.

SOIN21117

All your finances.
All in one app.

SoFi QR code, Download now, scan this with your phone’s camera

All your finances.
All in one app.

App Store rating

SoFi iOS App, Download on the App Store
SoFi Android App, Get it on Google Play

TLS 1.2 Encrypted
Equal Housing Lender