Launch Party: China of Tomorrow Podcast

Director of Modern Alpha

When I joined WisdomTree two years ago, I learned about their China ex-state-owned enterprises (ex-SOE) strategy and joked how easy it would be to explain to our clients: “My own life is a China ex-SOE story.” 

As we talked with investors more, WisdomTree’s Jeremy Schwartz and I increasingly felt we could contribute more to discussions about China and Asia. 

So, we’re excited to announce the China of Tomorrow podcast, focusing first and foremost on Asia and the people doing business there. 

China is 40% of typical emerging market equity index while Asia as a whole is about 75% of the index. Traditional English media focuses heavily on top-line macro and political discussions, which obscures the details. We will bring the fresh perspectives of portfolio managers in the U.S. and mainland China who manage China/Asia-focused investment strategies and compare investment processes.

You can check out the first six episodes in the series below.


1. Portfolio Manager Dr. Wei Huang of The Stanley-Laman Group, focusing on Chinese and Indian equity

  • Wei mentioned that although India has not harbored global tech companies like China, it is an upcoming market and has lots of rapidly growing industries, yet a small market share. 


2. Mr. Ethan Yufeng Ma, partner and chief representative at law firm Orrick’s Shanghai office

  • Amid the U.S.-China trade war, the stories of actual trade lawsuits were seldom discussed. Mr. Ma told us about two extremely interesting cases: one where Orrick represented an American company and the other where the firm represented a Chinese company. The details of the cases illustrate the complexities of U.S.-China trade relations.


3. Patrick L. Springer, managing director of China’s full-service financial group HuaTai

  • Large Chinese firms have global ambitions, and Patrick shared his experience of working at HuaTai, which aims to be a two-way service provider, helping Chinese invest in global markets and helping U.S. investors get more familiar with Chinese equity, particularly domestic A shares.


4. Mr. John Ying Wu, who sold his own education business to TAL

  • John and I reminisced about how hard it is to pass all the standardized tests from elementary to junior high and high school to college, which significantly whittles down entrants. The demand for preparing for overseas education is a reflection of the state-centered education system in China.


5. Finance Professor Nan Li of Shanghai Jiao Tong University on Chinese fintech regulations

  • As I have written as well, many Chinese fintech companies are less “techy” and more “finny” than people think. 


6. Mr. Winston Ma on Chinese blockchain technology and digital war

  • Mr. Ma mentioned that digital currencies like Bitcoin are banned but blockchain technology is encouraged by the Chinese government.


We hope this gives you a taste of the insights we plan to add to broader U.S.-China/Asia discussions. Please find us on Spotify and SoundCloud and suggest topics for discussions on Twitter.


About the Contributor
Director of Modern Alpha

Liqian Ren, Ph.D., joined WisdomTree as Director of Modern Alpha in 2018. She leads WisdomTree’s quantitative investment capabilities and serves as a thought leader for WisdomTree’s Modern Alpha® approach. Liqian was previously at Vanguard, where she worked for 12 years, most recently as a portfolio manager in the Quantitative Equity Group managing Vanguard’s active funds and conducting research on factor strategies. Prior to joining Vanguard, she was an associate economist at the Federal Reserve Bank of Chicago. Liqian received her bachelor’s degree in Computer Science from Peking University in Beijing, her master’s in Economics from Indiana University—Purdue University Indianapolis, and her MBA and Ph.D. in Economics from the University of Chicago Booth School of Business. Liqian co-hosts a podcast on China and Asian markets with Jeremy Schwartz, WisdomTree’s Global Head of Research, and she is a co-host on the Wharton Business Radio program Behind the Markets on SiriusXM 132.