Premium demand for China Life IPO

Chinese life insurer amasses demand of $80 billion from retail and institutional investors.

China Life priced near the top of its indicative price range on Friday after attracting demand equivalent to two full trading months on the Hong Kong Stock Exchange. The company accumulated a staggering $80 billion for its $3 billion IPO, the world's largest this year.

Not since Beijing Enterprises in May 1997 have Hong Kong, or indeed world equity markets, seen anything quite like it. As one local banker noted earlier this week, Hong Kong has a truly manic depressive nature. One month it's as high as a kite, the next it's plunged into black despair. Six months on from SAR's, who'd have predicted the year would end on this note...

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