Behind the massive sell-off in Chinese wealth management products

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When Li Ming put around 10,000 yuan ($1,450) in a wealth management product (WMP) in November, he expected nothing short of a foolproof investment. But within a few days, local bond market turmoil led to plunging values of WMPs, which had invested heavily in bonds, stoking panic among retail investors including Li.

“It’s supposed to be a low-risk WMP, and I have never taken a loss from such products before,” he told Caixin in late November. “I might as well have deposited the money into my bank account.”