May

22

 From the Financial Times’s site. I do wonder about the name “rat investors,” given the high regard in which rats are held. Is it a compliment?

Chinas Day-Traders Look for Black Horses, By Geoff Dyer in Shanghai

Published: May 22 2007 

The thousands of ordinary Chinese who are signing up each day to trade shares are not too concerned about the conventional ways of valuing a stock, but they need to know the difference between a ghost and a black horse.

Chinese have combined a traditional delight in word-play with their new-found passion for stocks to create a rich supply of colloquial jargon for investing that is bandied around brokerage offices.

Ghost shares are highly risky, but black horses have beaten expectations. Buying cheap to sell high later is known as fighting for the hat, while selling at a loss to avoid further losses is meat slicing. Investors who think a piece of news will boost prices claim to be lifting the sedan chair.

When a fund manager was sacked last week for allegedly manipulating share prices, websites hummed with talk of rat investors, the term for insider traders.

There is even a Chinese phrase that could define the current boom. On top of bulls and bears there is the deer market, when large groups of amateur, short-term speculators cause markets to move in erratic jolts.


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