Since its launch in 2009, the Hong Kong Institute of Bankers Annual Banking Conference has become one of the most important banking events in Hong Kong.
This year’s conference was dedicated to exploring the timely theme, “Finding the New Winning Formula”.
The 1-day conference discussed tactics for the banking industry to tackle recurring challenges such as the high cost-to-income ratio, a lack of suitable talent and evolving regulatory requirements. Expert speakers and panelists also dealt with emerging issues, like the rapid growth of mobile channels, changing customer expectations, competition from innovative non-bank competitors and China’s declining economic growth.
Presenting the results of a recent survey of investors in Hong Kong, Ms Winnie Yeung outlined investor sentiment in several key areas. Ms Yeung, who is Managing Director of the leading market research firm Cimigo, explained that five areas had been covered in the survey namely;
- Interest in investing in the HK property market in the next five years.
- Interest in investing in the HK financial markets.
- Overall confidence in HK economic performance over the next 5 years.
- Confidence in mainland China’s economic performance over the next 5 years.
- Confidence in global economic performance in the next 5 years (excluding HK and China).
The results of the questions in these five areas were consolidated to form an overall index of investor confidence. Investors showed strong overall confidence, particularly in Hong Kong’s economic and property sector outlook but seemed somewhat less willing to commit to investment in Hong Kong at this time. The survey showed a rating of almost 130 (on a scale from zero to two hundred, with one hundred being neutral) in confidence in Hong Kong’s economic performance, while actual interest in investing was 117.
Property was also a strong performer in the index, with a high level of interest in investing in the property market in the next five years. Of those with a strong interest in investing, 37% say they will buy to self-occupy and 32% as long-term investment for value appreciation.
An ongoing hot topic at the banking conference for the last few years has been the level of confidence in investment in RMB, which slipped a little this year versus the high ratings from previous years. The outlook for the next 12 months is still high enough to give bankers offering RMB-based savings and financial services confidence that Hong Kong investors will continue to support the currency.
The HKIB event attracted over 500 delegates from over 100 institutions including bankers from Mainland China and Macau.