Initial public offerings (IPOs) on the Chinese mainland's A-share market are expected to recover in the second half of 2019 after approvals hit a new low last year, the China Daily reported Friday.
"We predict the A-share market will remain in a cautious mood during the first half of 2019, but will stabilize and recover in the second half due to marginal improvements in bearish situations," the newspaper cited Frank Lyn, markets leader of PwC for the Chinese mainland and Hong Kong, as saying.
The professional services firm estimated that there will be 130 to 150 A-share IPOs this year, with total deal sizes reaching 100 billion to 120 billion yuan (14.6 billion to 17.5 billion U.S. dollars).
A-share IPOs slowed significantly in 2018, partly thanks to the China Securities Regulatory Commission's stricter review process, according to PwC.
The number of IPOs on the Shanghai and Shenzhen stock markets fell to a five-year low of 105 in 2018, compared with 436 in 2017. The amount of funds raised dropped to 138.6 billion yuan last year, down by 40 percent year on year, according to the newspaper.
"The just-concluded Central Economic Work Conference set the direction for the A-share market development in 2019. Continuous proactive fiscal policy and prudent monetary policy, cutting taxes and administrative fees on a larger scale, and other priorities are of great significance in boosting investors' confidence, guiding market expectations, and promoting the stabilization and recovery of A shares," Lyn said.
The conference has also unprecedentedly improved the capital market's position by putting forward various proposals, such as increasing the proportion of direct financing, which indicates the potential of China's capital markets in the future and the space for reform, he added.
Lyn said the highlight of the country's IPO market in 2019 will be the establishment of a science and technology innovation board at the Shanghai Stock Exchange, which will pilot a registration system for listed companies.