Former China brokerage chief kills himself: Xinhua

(From AFP/Bloomberg)

The former head of Chinese brokerage Changjiang Securities has committed suicide, the official Xinhua news agency reported Tuesday, just weeks after the company said he was under investigation by authorities.

Changjiang Securities headquarters in Wuhan

Changjiang Securities headquarters in Wuhan

Yang Zezhu apparently jumped from a 12-storey residential building in the central city of Wuhan on Tuesday afternoon after leaving a suicide note, Xinhua said on its microblog. Police are still investigating the case.

In early January, Changjiang Securities said in a statement to the Shenzhen stock exchange that Yang was under investigation by the Communist Party corruption watchdog for suspected violations of discipline, a phrase that typically refers to graft.

AFP said that Yang stepped down soon afterwards as both chairman and party chief of the securities firm, a mid-sized brokerage that was ranked 17th by assets nationwide in 2014.

Bloomberg reported Tuesday that Changjiang Securities announced Yang’s resignation on Jan. 7, a day after the mid-sized Chinese brokerage said he had been placed under investigation. Yang, who was in his early 60s, was said to be suspected of violations of discipline for “personal reasons,” Changjiang said in a Jan. 6 statement.

China’s financial sector has been the focus of official probes since last summer’s stock rout. Local regulators have vowed to rid the market of unethical behavior including “malicious” short-selling and share-rice price manipulation. The probes have snared top finance figures including officials at the securities regulator and executives at Citic Securities Co., the nation’s biggest brokerage.

Yang had a long career with state-owned companies in Hubei province, having served as chairman at several state-owned enterprises in the region, according to Changjiang Securities’ annual report. He had also steered the provincial branch of the State-owned Assets Supervision and Administration Commission. The agency is charged with overseeing government conglomerates, according to the report.



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