Chinese developer Fantasia misses repayment deadline

  • Fantasia says it failed to pay $206 mln due Oct. 4
  • Country Garden Services says Fantasia unit failed to repay loan
  • Fitch slashes Fantasia rating to CCC-

Chinese property developer Fantasia Holdings Group Co Ltd (1777.HK) missed a debt payment deadline on Monday in the latest sign that distress is spreading from embattled China Evergrande (3333.HK) and through the real estate sector.

Fantasia said $206 million was due on Oct. 4 and that it did not pay, in a statement to the Hong Kong stock exchange. The company had said as recently as Sept. 20 that it had “sufficient working capital and no liquidity issue”.

With a market value of $415 million, Fantasia is a minnow. But its missed deadline adds to worries that a credit crunch among Chinese developers could drive a broader crash in a sector that comprises about a quarter of the Chinese economy.

The country’s second-biggest developer, Evergrande, is teetering on the verge of default after missing payment deadlines of its own last month and its debts of $305 billion are big enough that a messy collapse could hit property prices.

Fitch estimates Fantasia has nearly $2 billion of international bond payments to make between now and the end of next year as well as almost $1 billion of local bond payments.

Earlier on Monday property manager Country Garden Services (6098.HK) said a Fantasia subsidiary failed to repay a 700 million yuan ($108 million) loan also due on Oct. 4 and Fitch had slashed the company’s credit rating.

Fantasia dollar-denominated bonds slid more than 5 cents to fresh record lows on Monday.

Its announcement came after the Hong Kong stock exchange had shut.

Author: Tom Westbrook, Reuters

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