Chinese Women: Key Investors in P2P Lending

December 8, 2015
Editor: Eileen Cheng
Chinese Women: Key Investors in P2P Lending

The "2015 White Paper on China's P2P Lending Services Industry"is released on November 5 in Shanghai at the 6th Shanghai Financial Information Industry Summit. [csai.cn]

The P2P (peer-to-peer) finance industry is flourishing in China, and women have played a crucial role in the sector, according to the "2015 White Paper on China's P2P Lending Services Industry" released in Shanghai on November 5.

The P2P model commonly involves regular citizens lending small amounts to individuals or small-business startups, via a mediating scheme or online platform, thus providing an alternative to the more formal route of asking for finance from banks.

The white paper builds up an overall picture of the emerging sector, and took into account P2P development in Shanghai and in branches of the country's associated businesses.

The 21 P2P enterprises studied in the document achieved a total revenue of around 2.7 billion yuan (U.S. $420 million) over the first nine months of 2015, with the respective turnover of the top seven firms topping 100 million yuan (U.S. $15.6 million).

Ever since China's first P2P lending platform was set up in 2007, enterprises of this type have increased to more than 3,000 as of the end of 2015. The year 2014 witnessed a rapid surge in the industry, rising by 117 percent year-on-year to turnover 201.3 billion yuan (U.S. $31.4 billion).

The individual P2P seed lenders have also grown enormously from merely 10,000 in 2011 to a mass of around 2.7 million in October 2015. People with bachelor degrees comprise the biggest group of such investors, accounting for 36 percent of the total. Vocational college graduates take 28 percent of the lenders. On the whole, most P2P lenders have an annual income of less than 100,000 yuan (U.S. $15,600), making up some 73 percent.

From the gender perspective, women P2P lenders have taken increased stakes in the field, rising from 30 percent to half of all investors. The per capita investment of these females averages 11,700 yuan (U.S. $1,800), some 3,300 yuan more than that of their male counterparts. Moreover, 72.9 percent of the borrowers are men. Hence, it is jokingly commented that "P2P investment is commonly about women lending money to men."

Chinese women are enjoying growing disposable incomes, and greater control over their family investments, said the researchers.

Geographically speaking, Beijing, east China's Shanghai and Zhejiang and south China's Guangdong are the major homes to P2P lenders. In Shanghai alone, the P2P investors have grown from 87,000 in early 2015 to 285,000 this October. In the same period, Shanghai's online financing revenue totaled nearly 100 million yuan (U.S. $15.6 million), indicating a yearly growth of almost 40 percent.

"P2P lending has promoted the sound development of the financing industry, and better met the financial needs of small enterprises and individuals," said Xing Bo, director of Shanghai Financial Information Industry Association and vice president of Neusoft, the largest IT solutions and services provider in China.

(Source: Xinhua, csai.cn, news.mydrivers.com/Translated and edited by Women of China)

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