US audit inspectors completed the first round of on-site inspections of Chinese companies ahead of schedule, signaling progress in the process of preventing the delisting of shares of US-listed Chinese companies, Bloomberg reported.
US audit officials completed the first round of on-site inspections of Chinese companies ahead of schedule, signaling progress in the process of preventing the delisting of hundreds of shares of US-listed Chinese companies, Bloomberg reported today.
Dozens of US Public Company Accounting Oversight Board (PCAOB) inspectors will leave Hong Kong as soon as this weekend, earlier than the original mid-November schedule, the report said, citing people familiar with the matter.
The work has progressed despite requests from their Chinese counterparts for certain information to be redacted, the report said.
Perhaps encouraged by the progress, Hong Kong stocks rallied sharply today, with shares of major electric vehicle companies all surging.
"If the US-China audit woes are resolved, indeed it will be a positive for stocks, especially ADRs and tech," Bloomberg quoted Hong Hao, a partner at Grow Investment Group, as saying.
"This is the reason why they are doing well, despite a Hawkish Fed and plunging US stocks. The market often buys on hopes and sells on news," Hong said.
Still, it's too early to determine whether Chinese companies will pass muster, the report noted.
The PCAOB will likely file an initial report on key findings in the coming weeks, which could point out deficiencies or room for improvement in areas such as internal controls and record-keeping, the Bloomberg report said, citing people familiar with the matter.
The inspection became tense when it began in September as Chinese officials demanded that names, addresses and salary levels be blacked out of company documents.
The US side said it would determine whether the Chinese presence blocked their access to audit documents and personnel, and stressed they must have full access to the files without redactions, the people said.
The China Securities Regulatory Commission (CSRC), the Ministry of Finance and the PCAOB signed an audit regulatory cooperation agreement on August 26, and the CSRC said at the time that the cooperation would start soon.
This is an important step forward for both Chinese and US regulators in addressing the common concern of audit regulatory cooperation and lays the groundwork for the next phase of cooperation between the two sides to move forward, according to the CSRC's statement.
After the agreement was signed, PCAOB inspectors came to Hong Kong to conduct on-site inspections of audit materials of some companies listed in the US.