New York Stock Exchange again says it will delist 3 Chinese telecoms

The New York Stock Exchange again reversed course Wednesday and announced it would delist three major Chinese telecom companies — China Mobile, China Telecom, China Unicom Hong Kong.

The backdrop: The NYSE originally announced it would delist the companies on New Year’s Eve in order to comply with a White House executive order. The exchange then reversed course late on Monday and said it would no longer delist the telecoms.

Why it matters: The delisting complies with a November executive order that restricts American companies and individuals from owning shares in 31 Chinese companies with links to the People’s Liberation Army, as part of an eleventh-hour effort from the Trump administration to increase pressure on China.

  • The NYSE said its latest reversal came after the Treasury Department’s Foreign Assets Control office told the exchange on Tuesday that President Trump’s order explicitly applies to equity-related securities of the three companies.
  • Trump signed a separate executive order on Tuesday to prohibit transactions with eight Chinese software applications, including Alipay and WeChat Pay. The White House deemed the apps a national security threat given their ability to access private information about their users.

What’s next: Trading in securities associated with the three companies will be suspended early on Jan. 11.

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