Immoral to invest in China, the U.S. and states must divest from China now!
The federal government has recently determined that Chinese assets are not suitable to be included in the federal 401(k) retirement program known as the Thrift Savings Plan. Trump administration officials agree that this does not make sense, and in fact go so far as to strongly urge private and public universities to divest from unstable and risky Chinese assets.
Just three months ago, our nation’s National Security Advisor, Robert O’Brien and National Economic Council Director Larry Kudlow successfully argued against a proposal that would allow federal government employee 401(k) type retirement investments to invest in Chinese companies writing,"This action would expose the retirement funds to significant and unnecessary economic risk, and it would channel federal employees' money to companies that present significant national security and humanitarian concerns because they operate in violation of U.S. sanction laws and assist the Chinese Government's efforts to build its military and oppress religious minorities."
Given this, why are these same assets allowed to remain hidden in private retirement plans and pensions? U.S. investors have more than $381 billion invested on Chinese and Hong Kong exchanges and bonds, according to the U.S. Treasury. In addition, 156 Chinese companies being listed on U.S. exchanges with a market capitalization of $1.2 trillion, according to the U.S.-China Economic and Security Review Commission.
Last month, State Department Undersecretary for Economic Growth Keith Krach wrote to our nation’s universities and colleges urging their divestment from Chinese assets stating, “Boards of U.S. university endowments would be prudent to divest from People’s Republic of China firms’ stocks in the likely outcome that enhanced listing standards lead to a wholesale de-listing of PRC firms from U.S. exchanges by the end of next year.”
And yet our private retirement accounts are put at risk through emerging market funds which put a significant amount of capital at risk in China.
A month ago, retired Vice Admiral John Poindexter, former Attorney General Ed Meese and former Senator John DeMint headlined a letter signed by more than 200 leaders urging Labor Secretary Eugene Scalia to disqualify Chinese investments from private retirement accounts and pensions criticizing a 2013 Memorandum of Understanding engineered by then Vice President Joe Biden exempting Chinese companies from U.S. financial disclosure laws which, “put U.S. retirement investors at great risk.”
Secretary Scalia needs to act now to protect American private sector retirees from dangerous investments in Chinese companies, many of which are engaged in developing weapons designed to kill our soldiers, sailors, airmen and marines. Others use slave-and-child labor to produce their goods, and owning those companies effectively make American retirees little more than Chinese slave holders.
And Securities and Exchange Commissioner Jay Clayton needs to immediately end the Biden Chinese free pass access to U.S. stock exchanges without having to meet even the most basic transparency standards.
I urge you to take steps today to pressure Clayton and Scalia to end the capitalization of dangerous, risky and immoral Chinese companies because as Mr. O’Brien and Mr. Kudlow wrote to the National Railroad Retirement Investment Trust, “In light of these economic, national security, and humanitarian concerns, we ask that you and your board carefully consider whether the NRRI Trust is currently acting as an appropriate fiduciary for those hardworking Americans and retirees the RRB serves.”
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Dear U.S. Senators and U.S. Representative and the President:
We will deliver to your state House and Senate and your Governor based on your street address.
Investment of American dollars into Chinese assets is impossible to continue to justify.
We know that the Pentagon has named thirty-one Chinese companies, including Huawei as controlled by the Chinese military. Yet, some of these companies remain listed on U.S. stock exchanges with two on the New York Stock Exchange. Wall Street should not be capitalizing companies that have been named as avowed enemies of the United States. It is dangerous and wrong.
What’s more, the Obama-Biden administration made a deal that allows Chinese companies to be treated better than U.S. firms on American markets by waiving basic transparency requirements needed for determining whether a company is worthy of investment. This has allowed our nation’s index funds to be littered with Chinese assets with no way to tell if they are even financially sound. This Memorandum of Understanding must be ended by the Securities Exchange Commission now. It is beyond nuts to capitalize companies that could be little more than names on a piece of paper because of this “trust us” arrangement with the Chinese government.
It is even more bizarre for the U.S. Department of Labor and states to turn a blind eye to these unsafe and unwise investments by allowing them to be part of virtually every private pension and retirement fund through balanced portfolios that include Emerging Market funds that include these state-owned and operated Chinese assets. Under the law, the Labor Department is required to ensure that private retirement investments are financially sound, and Chinese assets are not.
Finally, the same Labor Department has found that twelve industries in China use child- or slave-labor and investment in China effectively makes U.S. investors unwitting slave owners.
If the past few months have proven anything, it is that America is repulsed by this very concept and the abject immorality of the Chinese government and companies masquerading as independent from it, demands full divestiture of U.S. investment funds from China’s unsafe, dangerous and unwise economy.
Thank you for taking action by publicly urging full U.S. divestiture from Chinese assets using the full weight of your office to institute immediate action to get America out of the business of capitalizing China.
Sincerely, YOUR NAME AND ADDRESS