On May 11, the U.S. National Security Adviser Robert O’Brien and National Economic Council Chair Larry Kudlow wrote to U.S. Labor Secretary Eugene Scalia stating that the White House does not want the Thrift Savings Plan (TSP), a federal employee retirement fund, to have money invested in the stock of Chinese companies.
Secretary Scalia wrote to Michael Kennedy, the chairman of the Federal Retirement Thrift Investment Board, sharing the Kudlow/O’Brien letter noting the two have “grave concerns with the planned investment on grounds of both investment risk and national security.” (#1, Stock Times)
TSP manages near 600 billion dollars of retirement money for several million federal employees including Congressmen, White House staff, and military staff. It plans to invest about 4.5 billion dollars in the Morgan Stanley Capital International All Country World Ex-U.S. Investable Market Index (MSCI ACWI ex-USA IMI). That index covers 22 developed and 26 emerging markets and consists of large, mid, and small-cap stocks from more than 6,000 companies, including Chinese securities.
The MSCI index fund controversy is that it includes “many firms that are involved in the Chinese Government’s military, espionage and human rights abuses,” which Senator Marco Rubio and other U.S. law makers have repeatedly pointed out. For example, AviChina Industry & Technology Ltd. is the listing company for the Aviation Industry Corporation of China (AVIC) that develops manned aircraft, unmanned aerial vehicles, missiles, and other weapons systems for the People’s Liberation Army. AVIC and its subsidiaries have been the subjects of repeated sanctions for proliferation activities related to Iran, North Korea, and Syria. Hangzhou Hikvision Digital Technology (Hikvision), a state-run technology firm, provides tens of thousands of surveillance cameras throughout the Xinjiang Uighur Autonomous Region. The cameras support the Chinese Communist regime in detaining over one million Uighur Muslims and other ethnic and religious minorities. (#2, Senator Marco Rubio’s website)
Related postings on Chinascope:
- World Against the CCP: Pompeo Criticized CCP for Attempting to Steal U.S. Vaccine
- World Against the CCP: U.S. May Break the CCP’s Great Firewall by November
- World Against the CCP: A Chinese Top Think Tank Warned Beijing about Global Anti-China Sentiment
- World Against the CCP: A Survey Showed 82 Percent of Chinese Netizen Chose to Support the U.S.
- World Against the CCP: Survey Showed Two-Thirds Americans View CCP Negatively
1. Excerpt in Chinese:
中美角力蔓延至金融领域，据多家美媒报道，美国国家安全顾问奥布莱恩(Robert O’Brien)及白宫经济顾问库德洛(Larry Kudlow)发信给美国劳工部，以中国导致疫情大流行或会引来更多制裁等理由，明确表示白宫不希望负责管理联邦雇员退休金的“节俭储蓄计划”(Thrift Savings Plan,TSP)投资于中资股，预计涉及资产规模约逾45亿美元，并要求美国联邦退休储蓄投资委员会(FRTIB)最迟周三采取行动。
劳工部长尤金·斯卡利亚（Eugene Scalia）接着已致函联邦退休储蓄投资委员会主席肯尼迪（Michael Kennedy），并附上了库德洛和奥布莱恩所写的信，指出这两名白宫官员都“出于对投资风险和国家安全的考虑而对计划中的投资表示严重关切”。
1.Stock Times, May 13, 2020
2. Senator Marco Rubio’s website, August 26, 2019