Pioneering Chinese investor dies aged 71

Pioneering Chinese investor dies aged 71
Sun rises over the city of Shanghai (David Davies/PA)

A former factory worker known as “China’s First Shareholder” after he amassed a fortune trading in the country’s infant financial markets in the 1980s has died at the age of 71, according to news reports.

Yang Huaiding quit a job as a warehouse keeper at a Shanghai ferroalloy factory in 1988 and used his savings of 20,000 yuan (£3,800 at that time) to buy and sell Treasury bonds after the ruling Communist Party began allowing the transfer of ownership as part of market-style economic reforms.

Mr Yang became publicly known after he asked police to protect him while he carried boxes of cash and bonds from one province to another.

He was dubbed “Yang Million” after he made one million yuan (£177,000 at that time) in one year.

In the early 1990s, Mr Yang made a second fortune trading in newly opened Chinese stock markets.

News reports said Mr Yang scored his last major windfall in 2008 when he correctly forecast the fall of share prices that came with the global financial crisis.

Mr Yang became the first person in China to hire bodyguards and a private lawyer and to sue a securities company, according to the Securities Times.

It said he was the first private individual to act as a consultant for banks and tax authorities.

“As one of the witnesses of the ‘awakening era’ of China’s securities market, his death is regrettable,” the newspaper said.

Details of survivors and funeral arrangements were not reported.

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