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The Chinese MMF that came in from the cold

Just in case you missed it, the WSJ reported on Tuesday that the world’s largest money market fund, China’s Yu’e Bao, will be making changes to its investment strategy to comply with new Chinese investment rules.This is a big deal.Yu’e Bao was born out of idle reserves (“leftover treasure”) kept in Alipay accounts, much the way PayPal’s money market fund (now defunct) was born out of spare cash parked in PayPal accounts.The appeal of the MMF for the customer is obvious: it provides an opportunity to generate returns on cash reserves held in digital money platforms, which otherwise would be forgone since these platforms are not banking institutions.The innovation from the platform’s perspective is in not seizing the rate differential for itself but rather passing it on to customers.

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Izabella Kaminska
Izabella Kaminska joined FT Alphaville in October 2008, which was, perhaps, the best time in the world to become a financial blogger. Before that she worked as a producer at CNBC, a natural gas reporter at Platts and an associate editor of BP’s internal magazine. She has also worked as a reporter on English language business papers in Poland and Azerbaijan and was a Reuters graduate trainee in 2004.

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