China actually looks pretty good compared to its neighbours in Asia

A lot of fingers pointed to China during the recent stock market downturn, blaming the country’s slowing growth and imploding stock market for the sharp US stock selloff.

According to Goldman Sachs, however, China’s market is one of the safest in Asia.

In a note, Goldman analysts looked at a variety of macro factors include sovereign debt, foreign exchange reserves, equity valuations and banking reserves to assess the vulnerability of 9 Asian markets.

Besides Taiwan, they found that China has the strongest fundamentals of any Asian stock market. The most vulnerable were Thailand and Malaysia.

Here’s Goldman explanation:

“While investor confidence on China’s ability to fend off growth/systemic risks and effectively support growth has been rattled by heightened asset market volatility and the recent policy response function, we believe China’s still-robust national balance sheets, high FX reserves, high policy interest rates and required reserve ratios in the banking sector, and relatively efficient policy transmission mechanism given the State’s control in the economy implies that an abrupt macro dislocation/hard landing shouldn’t be the base case on China, at least before these conditions substantially change.”

This confidence also led Goldman expects Chinese stocks to finish the year up 36% from the current price.

The benchmark for the Chinese market, the Shanghai Composite, is currently down 43% since its peak in June, but still up for the year by 33%. Tuesday was a roller coaster day, finally ending down 1.3%.

In comparison, Thailand’s index, the Stock Exchange of Thailand, has lost 17.2% in the past six months and is also down 11.9% for the year. It dropped 0.3% on Tuesday.

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